With that in mind, by this point in the recovery, our jobs market should resemble the stock market, and if the right policies were in place, the jobs market would mirror the share rebound in Dollar Thrifty. Instead the early bounce in jobs that saw just a single great month (516,000 jobs May 2010) fades quickly to the point where any number above 100,000 is considered a blessing. Since that May 2010 number, there hasn't been a month where job creation cracked 300,000. In the Reagan first term bounce there was one 300,000 month and seven months above 400,000 (George Bush had two above 300,000).
For a while our jobs market had the same trajectory as the stock market and many individual stocks like Dollar Thrifty. Then jobs hit a bump in the road and the economy has struggled to the point of dodging double-dip bullets. Of course the stock market also gets a boost from other economies around the world where American companies make things people desire and respect. Moreover, now that America has the highest corporate tax rate in the entire world, we are nearing two trillion dollars of profits sitting in banks offshore. Just as households have cut back on debt and state and local governments choke on massive pension problems, other possible valves of economic growth have been chocked off by new rules, regulations and mean-spirited rhetoric.
In May 2010 when the US economy posted its best jobs report during the Obama era, shares of Dollar Thrifty were changing hands around $45.00 a share, or about half its true value revealed by a key rival.
When we hear how the economy was hemorrhaging 800,000 jobs a month (a phenomenon that began with election results in November 2008), remember it was a sign of panic not value.
Out of the ashes of panic, many stocks have not only regained losses but also gone on to new heights. This week Dollar Thrifty (DTG) finally agreed to be acquired by rival Hertz for $2.3 billion, or $87.50 a share. This deal could have been done during the throes of the panic in early 2009 when stocks were dirt cheap. So, instead of picking up the company for $0.73 a share, which was the price where the stock was trading back on February 23, 2009, Hertz picked it up at a price 118 times greater. I point this out to say early 2009 was a strange period when the nation was upside down and the jobs market and stock market were not true reflections of the nation's economic value.