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US labor participation at 35 year low, US cut 16,000 construction jobs in Dec. 2013

January 10, 2014

1/10/14, “US job growth fell sharply in December, BBC

The labour force participation rate – a closely watched measure – fell noticeably. The share of Americans who are either working or looking is now 62.8%, close to 35-year lows….

Construction cut 16,000 jobs, the biggest drop in the industry in 20 months.“…

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“The general picture from this monthly report is a surprisingly weak jobs situation.

It’s true that unemployment fell, but that was largely due to people dropping out of the labour market. If they are not looking for work, they are not counted as unemployed.

The number of new jobs was well short of what’s needed to keep up with a growing working age population.

The weakness of this report is at odds with other signs suggesting the US economy is gathering strength.

The news complicates the Federal Reserve’s decisions about how quickly to curtail its efforts to stimulate the US economy.”

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1/10/14, More Than Half Of December Jobs Added Were Temporary,” Zero Hedge

“Once again, in its sheer panic to tout the quantity, or lack thereof, in the case of the December jobs number, the frenzied media and pundits completely ignored the quality of the jobs gained in the last month of December. Or lack thereof. Because as the simple breakdown below shows, of the 74K jobs gained in December, 55%, or 40K were the worst of the lot when it comes to wages or benefits: temporary jobs.

As for the other job additions? Well, between Temp Help, and the bottom of the barrel paying Retail and Wholesale Trade jobs, the total additions were 111K. Which means all the other, better-paying, job groups saw… a drop of 35K.

In other words, the “recovery” may be lacking in numbers, but at least it is completely lacking in quality. And oh yes: remember – when it is snowing outside, employers only hire temp workers, hence it’s the weather’s fault.”

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