We’re going backward

They say the economy is moving in the right direction, that we should stay the course, that it takes time to pull out of the recession that began in late 2007.

icon-dollarsign_thumb2 We’re going backward

In fact, things are getting worse.

The economy was creating 153,000 new jobs per month last year. That dropped during the first seven months of this year to an average of 139,000 per month. In August, we were down to 96,000.

It takes more than 100,000 new jobs per month just to stay even with the number of people entering the labor force. It would take double that number over a decade to bring today’s jobless rate down to the unemployment levels of 2007.

Factory payrolls were cut by 15,000 workers in August, the biggest decline in two years and a strong reversal of the 23,000 gain in factory payrolls in July.

The dip in the official unemployment rate from 8.3 percent in July to 8.1 percent in August was due to 368,000 people dropping out of the labor force.

The labor-participation rate, the share of the working-age population in the labor force (as either employed or looking for work), dropped to 63.5 percent in August, the lowest labor-participation rate in more than three decades.

The decline in the labor-participation rate is due in large part to the extended duration of unemployment in the current economy. “The average length out of the job market continues to be a stunning 39 weeks,