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November 7, 2003
It Seems A Little Odd for a "Jobless" Recovery

I know we're in a jobless recovery, because all of those truth-tellers like Al Sharpton keep telling us so, but shouldn't the primary characteristic of a jobless recovery be one that doesn't create jobs?

The economy has created nearly 300,000 new jobs in the past three months after a half-year drought, pushing unemployment down to 6 percent in October and leaving little doubt that the jobs market is bouncing back.

The Labor Department reported Friday that payrolls grew by 126,000 last month, many more than economists had predicted. That followed a revised 125,000 new jobs in September, more than double what initially was reported. U.S. companies added 35,000 to their payrolls in August.

250,000 jobs added in the last two months. At that rate, we'll add 1.75 million jobs by Election Day next year. We aren't out of the woods economically, though:

The new jobs added last month mostly were in lower-paying industries such as retail and temporary employment firms. ... Also, 1.4 million workers were only able to find part-time work, up 27 percent from a year ago. To make ends meet, 7.5 million Americans worked two or more jobs last month, up from 7.3 million a year ago. One of four people out of work were unemployed for 27 weeks or longer last month. Nearly half of those were white-collar workers in management, professional, sales and office jobs, Challenger said.

The jobs recovery has to start somewhere, and it's now clear that it's really begun in earnest. As the economy continues its recovery, investment will increase, which will create more jobs at the production level, which will create a need for more supervisory, management, and sales positions. What's key now is to make sure we don't create disincentives for investment -- like jacking up taxes, especially on capital gains.

I guess the Democrats are right about Bush being a failure -- he just can't seem to deliver that jobless recovery they wanted.

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Posted by Ed Morrissey at November 7, 2003 8:11 PM

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