We will dish up this morning’s Job numbers in a minute.
But before we do that, let’s ask a theoretical question, shall we?
Can the jobs picture be too good?
Here’s the problem in dehydrated form:
Too many job openings means everyone can find a job if they just get out and look for one. And, since Help Wanted signs have been appearing a lot of places, we have to assume there is likely just a bit of wage-driven inflation on the horizon.
That may sound fine, but it’s not: Prices of the good touched by the higher-priced hands will have their prices adjusted upwards, as well.
Next thing you know, the interest rates will be kicking up again and the Vicious Cycle will kick-in and we will be off on another massive 35-year work-up as inflation will bring us another economic peak around 2050.
That is, assuming the global war (2022-2024) on the backside of the Greatest Depression (starting late 2017) leaves any survivors.
To be sure, citing the “right” jobs number is hard. If you take simple payroll information, then perhaps the Labor Department numbers are credible. But the Alternative Measures of Labor Underutilization (Table U-6) is where Trumpedential candidates pull the 94-million un and under-employed from.
Problem is, each camp (as is so often the case) has a little bit of the Truth. Yes, there are lots of jobs, but if you want $30 and hour, benefits, vacation, and some personal/comp/and sick days, then well, maybe not so many. Pizza delivery ain’t pricing that kind of labor into the (sourdough, think-crust) mix.
Speaking of lower-end labor: Picked up the lead in VentureBeat yesterday about the world’s first “drone delivered” meals coming out of Just Eat.
When you think about it, you can almost see the military pincers-style crunch on the lower-income workers tightening up.
While there are (for now) lots of jobs, there is huge competition for jobs from the (should be but Obama doesn’t seem to follow the laws as passed by Congress so well) immigrants. And on the other side are the new-fangled machines.
I would tell you how this works out when we get to the “confidence collapse” that marks the Greatest Depression, but I need topics for columns-to-come in 2017 and 2018.
I know, not fair to tease, but here’s a future headline from out there a ways: Trumpvilles. These will be the modern analogs to Hoovervilles and will come from similar reasons, just different labels this time around.
Enough yammering…here’s the scandal-sheet just out…which you will notice improved as I suggested it would:
“The unemployment rate declined to 4.6 percent in November, and total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 178,000, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today.
Employment gains occurred in professional and business services and in health care.
Household Survey Data
In November, the unemployment rate decreased by 0.3 percentage point to 4.6 percent, and the number of unemployed persons declined by 387,000 to 7.4 million. Both measures had shown little movement, on net, from August 2015 through October 2016. (See table A-1.)
Among the major worker groups, the unemployment rate for adult men declined to 4.3 percent in November. The rates for adult women (4.2 percent), teenagers (15.2 percent),
Whites (4.2 percent), Blacks (8.1 percent), Asians (3.0 percent), and Hispanics (5.7 percent) showed little or no change over the month.
The number of job losers and persons who completed temporary jobs edged down by 194,000 to 3.6 million in November. The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks or more) was little changed at 1.9 million and accounted for 24.8 percent of the unemployed. Over the past 12 months, the number of long-term unemployed was down by 198,000.
About that U-6 Alternative Measures data?
“Unemployment in U-6 dropped to 9.3% from 9.5% in October, the previous month.”
And then what about the much touted Labor Participation Rate?
“The Labor Participation rate dropped to 62.7% from 62.8% in October.”
And last, we have the made-up, inferred, or what I think of as the Pokémon-birthed jobs that are “estimated” into existence via the CES Birth-Death Model?
“Only 2,000 jobs were created in November by the CES Birth-Death Model.”
This will be a difficult day for markets. That’s because on the one hand, you want people to have jobs. But you don’t want so many jobs that people start fighting (or inventing) for them.
And this matter of human labor displacement will be covered in this weekend’s Peoplenomics report which is simply titled “Robots Don’t Pay Income Tax.”
You’ll like it, or not. Depending mainly on what your view of depreciation is. The history of special tax treatment for the rich is seriously embedded in American starting with the conquest of the West by the railroads and in a curious way, depreciation of assets made the American genocide (that we don’t talk about in polite society) not just possible but inevitable.
History is about to replay on a different level. Except for the part where it’s not smallpox. It’s the human replacements and drones that make us all obsolete.
And yes, that’s the kind of socioeconomic shift that ends great civilizations based on delusional ideas about storing “wealth” in “paper” and “electrons.”
Futures are about flat while the herd tries to figure out what this jobs report means.
Speak of Electronic Tulips
One Bitcoin will fetch $768 FedNotes today.
We now return to the alt-real.
No Rest for the Trumped
We see that the paper that (if memory serves) lined up with the Clintonistas and said Donald Trump wasn’t fit is still sowing discontent.
This as it headlines “ For the Record: The next Defense secretary called war ‘a hell of a hoot’” in their online editions.
Perhaps more evenly others report CLOSEST THING TO PATTON’ Trump says retired Marine Gen. Mattis is his secretary of defense pick.
Grapes of the sour variety is it, we’re hearing?
Seems to me that USA Today may have attended the Jill Stein School of Statistics.
You know the one: Where graduates become delusional and self-important while failing to grasp the larger context of the math or social events.
In the Stein case, she can recount till the Second Coming and she still won’t win. And USA Today looks to pick up the politicized liberal millennial.
I suppose this is how “free markets as supposed to work” but it would be nice if at least the numbers would work-out so as to coat obvious politics with a thin patina of reasonableness.
That way, both surviving democrats on the Hill won’t sound completely idiotic. I know – that’s asking too much, I s’pose.
Hmmm… if you can’t say something nice, you still have a paper to fill…got it.
Our SecDef Pick Would Have Been?
Retired Marine Lt. General Paul K. Van Riper. Few remember how in Millennium Challenge 2002 he kicked everyone’s butt. But Wiki it:
“Van Riper gained notoriety after the Millennium Challenge 2002 wargame. He played the Red Team opposing force commander, and easily sank a whole carrier battle group in the simulation with an inferior Middle-Eastern “red” team in the first two days.
To do this, Van Riper adopted an asymmetric strategy. In particular, he used old methods to evade his opponent’s sophisticated electronic surveillance network. Van Riper used motorcycle messengers to transmit orders to front-line troops and World War II light signals to launch airplanes without radio communications. Van Riper used a fleet of small boats to determine the position of the opponent’s fleet by the second day of the exercise. In a preemptive strike, he launched a massive salvo of cruise missiles that overwhelmed the Blue forces’ electronic sensors and destroyed sixteen warships. This included one aircraft carrier, ten cruisers and five of six amphibious ships. An equivalent success in a real conflict would have resulted in the deaths of over 20,000 service personnel. Soon after the cruise missile offensive, another significant portion of the opposing navy was “sunk” by an armada of small Red boats, which carried out both conventional and suicide attacks that capitalized on Blue’s inability to detect them as well as expected.
After the simulation was restarted with different parameters, he claimed that the wargame had been fixed to falsely validate the current doctrine of the U.S. Navy. He is also critical of post-war Iraq plans and implementation. On April 24, 2006, he joined several other retired generals in calling for Rumsfeld’s resignation.”
Oh, and a further footnote: So far he has been exactly right on how President Useless has botched Iraq and fertilized ISIS. Not to mention the Iran payoff which seems safely under the rug…
Point is, Van Riper should be leading the backroom tacticians if we’re going to stop being a foreign policy joke.
After we fire the losers-nest of neocons at State who have been serial-fumblers at “regime change” that is.
Just a thought.
The Lost Democrats
Although it has been popular (by the Clintonistas) to claim the republican middle was imploding, we see just the opposite happening as the Democratic National Committee is looking for a new chair.
Representative Keith Ellison might have been a logical pick at one point, but now come the questions about past ties to the Nation of Islam and his defense of some anti-Semitic figures.
All of which leads to the conclusion that the democrats are on the rope, including the “legacy” of the he who is nearly gone.
Climate Change Marketing Equals Money
We’ve had nothing but respect for the climate-jackers. People like Al Gore, and that Illinois state senator Barrack something who helped assure the money to start the carbon exchange.
It has all been a miracle of “issue monetization.”
We are not alone in our recognition, now. The “world’s cities” are trying to scam up $375-billion to “fight climate change.”
While it sound worrisome, we notice that temps are actually coming down around the world and no, sea level has not flooded Wall St. yet.
What’s worse for the worried politicians is that while Obama has been “treating the Paris Accord” on climate as though it was law, it is in fact NOT.
An inconvenience that Forbes has a good summary on over here.
For the record, I am NOT climate denier. Earth has had climate change for millions of years. But until just recently, our predecessor upright apes hadn’t figured a way to monetize it.
Yes, the same light-punching apes who have invented the mobile phone now believe money can change weather, if you have enough of it.
We’re waiting for the next damn fool to monetize another absurdity. In the meantime, wanna buy some pollution credits?
Don’t call me skeptical. Call me George.
Oil: Up in Smoke
Wait…does this mean Iraq should be trounced for Global Warming? I mean smoke, suspended particulates…where’s the Obama climate army on this one, huh?