When the dismal June jobs report was released, Barack Obama tried to shine it up by calling it "a step in the right direction." However, the July report released last Friday was so bad that the White House advised us not to even look at it. American's really "shouldn't focus on any single monthly jobs report," they warned. That may make political sense for Team Obama during the campaign season, but the bigger problem is that collectively the economic record is even worse.
The unemployment rate went up in July to 8.3% according to the Labor Department's latest report, as the total number of unemployed workers increased by 45,000. That's 42 months in a row over 8.0%.
New jobs for the month totaled 163,000. Better than last month, but barely half the number needed to begin a return to a normal healthy economy.
In addition, the anemic June new jobs report was revised downward from 80,000 to just 64,000, continuing a pattern of revising downward already disappointing jobs reports the month after they are initially released.
As lackluster as it is, the new jobs total is really a "mirage" created by highly suspect "seasonal adjustments" arbitrarily made by the government to estimate the number of jobs, as accurately explained by Investor's Business Daily. The rest of the Labor Department's report confirms IBD's suspicions that somebody was cooking the books to give Obama at least a fig leaf to hide behind during the heat of the election campaign.
For example, the report reveals that the active workforce population actually shrunk by 150,000 as workers continue to give up trying to find a job.
The contraction of the workforce is particularly notable considering that the total civilian age-eligible population increased by 199,000 in July. The combination of the increase in population and decline in the workforce resulted in a 348,000 increase in the number of the people classified as "Not in the labor force" according to the July report. In other words, for every one new job supposedly created more than two people left or chose to not even enter the work force. The result was another drop in the Labor Force Participation Rate to 63.7%; just one tick away from matching the lowest LPR since 1981 – except for another Obama dubious record achieved in April, 2012.
Get the Market Movements in Advance: William's Edge Webinar for Thursday, March 6th, 2014 | John Ransom