Job growth in November was disappointing, which means the overall economy is still down a few million jobs since the beginning of the pandemic.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported on Friday that employment only rose by 210,000 in November. This is well below the numbers that economists were expecting. According to U.S. News, economists were estimating 573,000 jobs would be created in November.
The overall unemployment rate only fell 0.4 percent, from 4.6 to 4.2 percent, as CNBC reported.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki made an appearance on MSNBC on Friday morning, and when she heard the jobs numbers report, she avoided answering questions.
“Well I know this sounds a little archaic, but I can’t comment on them until 9:30,” Psaki said.
Jen Psaki says she “can’t comment” on the horrible November jobs report “until 9:30am.”
So why is she on TV? pic.twitter.com/cfhuQLKKXD
— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) December 3, 2021
This came after Psaki said on the show that economic issues were the most pressing concerns of the administration. She also claimed that the $2 trillion Build Back Better plan from President Joe Biden would actually help things.
But no matter what Psaki does or doesn’t say, these numbers are markedly disappointing — particularly after October’s numbers finally looked a bit more promising.
In October, there were 531,000 jobs added, so the Dow Jones estimated 573,000 new jobs and a jobless level of 4.5 percent for November, CNBC reported.
“It is unsettling to see that we were unable to build on October’s strong numbers, with uncertainty only set to increase as the winter progresses. That said, it is not completely surprising that this month fell short with the country preparing to respond to the COVID-19 Omicron variant and continuing to battle rising inflation and the ongoing supply chain crisis,” Steve Rick, chief economist at CUNA Mutual Group, said, according to NBC News.
But what’s especially concerning is that there is no real certainty about why the numbers for November are so bad.
“We all thought there would be a significant increase in labor supply and it hasn’t happened. So you ask, ‘Why?’ There’s tremendous uncertainty around that, but a big part of it is clearly linked to the ongoing pandemic,” Federal Reserve chairman Jerome Powell told a Senate Committee this week, as NPR reported.
Everywhere employers are struggling to find people to hire and it’s damaging the economy.
In fact, some sectors lost jobs in November. Market Watch reported that the retail sector lost 20,000 jobs.
However, hourly wages were up 4.8 percent in November. If employers are having to raise their hourly prices that much, it normally indicates that they are desperate and trying to reel in more workers.
Despite all of these appalling numbers and trends that show a limping and deflated economy, Psaki still acted as if everything was going to be fine.
“But I will say, what people can expect the president to continue to say, today, month to month, is that what we’re seeing are good trends, that we are continuing to put people back to work, that we are continuing to see participation in the workforce, that we are continuing to see the unemployment rate go down, but there’s more we need to do to address core problems that have existed long before the pandemic,” she said on MSNBC, just after she said she could not comment on the numbers.
But the American economy is not fine. If there is not significant growth soon in the workforce, then Biden has completely failed one of his most basic jobs as president.
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