The Black Hole of Jobless in America

EconMatters's picture


By EconMatters

June employment report from the BLS said the economy added 80,000 jobs (+84,000 in private sectors, -4,000 in government jobs) in June.  The unemployment rate is unchanged at 8.2% from May, while the U-6 under-employment rate rose 0.1% from May to 14.9% (in 2007, the rate was 8%).  The jobless rate has stuck above 8% for over three years since February 2009, the longest such stretch on record since 1948. 

Even though the total employed jumped by 128,000, the jobless rate remained the same, partly because the labor force increased by a larger 189,000.   That is not a good sign when the labor force is growing faster than job growth, as it suggests the unemployment rate could hit higher if the trend continues.  Out of the total unemployed, 41.9% or 5.4 million is trapped in the long-term unemployed category (jobless for 27 weeks and over), while growth in private payrolls was the weakest in 10 months.

New Jobs in the USA (Sept. 2008 to June 2012)


Chart Source:


The better news is that the jobless picture, while still gloomy, at least seems holding steady and not deteriorating.  The bad new is that don't expect we can dig out of this unemployment hole any time soon either.  

At an April 25 press conference, Fed Chairman Bernanke said about 100,000 a month job growth is needed just to stabilize the jobless rate, while 150,000 to 200,000 a month of new jobs are needed to reduce it.  The latest estimation from the CBO (Congressional Budget Office) implies that roughly 90,000 jobs a month is needed to keep up with the projected population growth--the underlying rate of labor force growth is now just 0.7% annually.  

According to economist Carmen Reinhart, the post-crisis weak period usually lasts as long as the boom that preceded it. The U.S. housing boom lasted 7 years (prices doubled from 2000-2007), which means the job market will also remain unhealthy until 2016, 7 years after the Great Recession officially ended in June 2009.

The more sobering view comes from the Brookings Institution.  As of June, the U.S. faces a “jobs gap” of 11.3 million jobs since the start of the Great Recession in December 2007. Under the assumption of 208,000 new jobs per month, it will take until June 2020 – or eight years – to close the jobs gap.  At 321,000 jobs per month, the economy will reach pre-recession employment levels by August 2016.  (See Chart Below).   

The reality is that regardless which estimate you go by, the current job creation trend still falls short--from April through June, the economy produced an average of just 75,000 jobs a month.   

Furthermore, in addition to high national debt, the U.S. would have more than $600 billion in higher taxes and reductions in defense and other government programs starting in 2013 if the Congress fails to resolve the "financial cliff".  Europe is facing its own "financial cliff" with sovereign debt crisis raging in several Euro countries, while China is also experiencing a significant slowdown, if not an outright recession.  

With this high degree of global uncertainty, companies most likely will put off adding permanent positions, and maintain status-quo by either asking existing employees to work longer hours, or hire temporary workers to keep the business going.      

The Great Recession and the poor job market in the past five years has stressed the middle class to the limit. The weakening economic outlook has partly prompted the Federal Reserve to expand its Operation Twist by $267 billion till the end of 2012.  Based on the recent language from the Fed, QE3 could be coming as well.  However, the seeds have long been sown from the poor fiscal and monetary policy implementation by the government.  The president's 2009 stimulus program, and Fed's two rounds of QE have gone to either big banks or non-essential special purpose projects, with very little to where it'd matter in terms of jobs.   

Right now, it looks like President Obama likely will get re-elected unless things start deteriorating fast and significantly (That's more a poor reflection of the current viable presidential candidates, instead of an endorsement of the current Administration.)  So that means we probably should not expect much difference even with a QE3 or an Obama stimulus 2.0 after five years into the black hole of jobless.       

Further Reading - Forget QE3, America Needs a Real Job and Road Stimulus  


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Mon, 07/09/2012 - 10:56 | 2598654 batterycharged
batterycharged's picture

Wait, isn't this what all the free market people want?

Free trade every where? Cheap labor abound! Money in the best hands (the wealthy and few)?

This is what happens in an unabated free market. You get several rich, many more poor and a whole lot of debt to discourage mass revolution.

The reality is that we need gov't intervention, and I don't mean the bank-backed Fed printing more money for...the wealthy. And I don't necessarily mean more food stamps.


Mon, 07/09/2012 - 10:16 | 2598551 shuckster
shuckster's picture

Jews control 72  seats in the Senate. Yet no Jews go to jail. What is with the assymetrical representation?

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 09:55 | 2598509 Everybodys All ...
Everybodys All American's picture

I don't buy that Obama is going to be re-elected ... not unless he and his cronies stuff the ballot box from Chicago.

Ok ... there is a chance.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 12:03 | 2598802 covert
covert's picture

the elections are rigged and so pointless. the usa is a dictatorship and this will become more obvious in the future.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 09:48 | 2598495 PulpCutter
PulpCutter's picture

Where are the TAX RETURNS, Romney!?

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 09:00 | 2598349 laomei
laomei's picture

The other stat being (conveniently) ignored is the massive rise of "disability".  Funny how that number shot way up when unemployment benefits ran out.  Fairly certain that they don't even count towards the labor force number anymore, thus allowing for more stat juking.  The payout's basically the same as unemployment, and there is no real limit to it that I'm aware of.  So for millions it's just been the obvious "short term" solution.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 08:21 | 2598281 MFL8240
MFL8240's picture

With this sort of report card, the American saps would consider putting this clown in for another 4 years?  It is astonishing to me to believe such ignorance still prevails.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 08:26 | 2598290 bobnoxy
bobnoxy's picture

Yeah, let's rush to put the people who created the mess back in there! Most of Romney's advisors come from the massively failed Bush administration. That should cure things.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 10:14 | 2598550 Everybodys All ...
Everybodys All American's picture

Plenty of democrats were there creating this mess as well. How many democrats were employed at the highest levels at Freddie and Fannie and were allowed to continue the unabated siphoning from the Federal government because of democrat backing? How about Chris Dodd and the shenanigans with Countrywide? I could go on ...

Go ahead and vote for Obama and watch as this country falls into a serious depression. I'm not saying a republican would be much or any better but you certainly should not reward his incompetence with your vote. Look at the job or economic numbers and tell me how you expect this president to turn this economy around. He makes Carter look like an economic genius.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 10:30 | 2598588 PulpCutter
PulpCutter's picture

Fannie & Freddie didn't cause the mess.  They were way late to the game of lowering lending standards.  '

What caused it was the loosening of regulation of the "financial services" industry.  Let's note that the GOP pushes to further de-fund the banking regulatory agencies, and prosecutors, every time we work on the federal budget.


Mon, 07/09/2012 - 12:57 | 2598961 Overfed
Overfed's picture

Glass-Steagall was repealed under Clinton, lest we forget.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 14:05 | 2599207 bobnoxy
bobnoxy's picture

Yeah, and remember how he had to drag the Republicans kicking and screaming to get them to go along with bank deregulation?

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 08:44 | 2598321 GeezerGeek
GeezerGeek's picture

The failed Bush administration cooperated with the Pelosi-Reid Congress and that resulted in the crash. In my opinion, it is more than a coincidence that, within 12 months of the Democrats regaining control of Congress, the economy went into a tailspin. That is not to say that the Congressional Republicans who controlled Congress in 2005-2006 were much better, which is why conservative Republican voters stayed home in the 2006 elections. A pox on both the parties, I say.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 09:55 | 2598504 PulpCutter
PulpCutter's picture

Clinton handed Bush an economy that was BOOMING, and running surpluses.

Bush handed Obama the controls to an economy on a kamakazi dive (see left side of bar graph).  The fact that we aren't a flaming pile of wreckage (yet) is to Obama's credit. 

The fact that Romney has picked the Bush economic team is $%#(&!

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 10:59 | 2598669 Doubleguns
Doubleguns's picture

. According to the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), which is the private, nonprofit, nonpartisan organization charged with determining economic recessions, the U.S. economy was in recession from March 2001 to November 2001[3], a period of eight months at the beginning of President George W. Bush's term of office.


Get your facts rights pulpcutter. Thats not BOOMING. Dotcom bust before your time too? 9/11 disaster in the fog bank by chance. Hopefully the R and D brainwashing can be washed from all the folks eventually.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 09:11 | 2598376 bobnoxy
bobnoxy's picture

Amazing how your Republican presidents are almost powerless, and blameless in the face of Democratic opposition, But Democratic presidents are solely responsible for everything that goes wrong. I don't see Obama critics assigning blame to Republicans in Congress very often.

Obama hasn't had a budget passed in his first three years, meaning Congress is really responsible for the deficits, right? They hold ''the power of the purse''. That seems lost in here too often.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 09:53 | 2598503 forrestdweller
forrestdweller's picture

why don't we organize a one day civil war between democrats and republicans. we organize an enormous battle. it's about 50/50, so they both have a fair chance.

it will also help the unemployment number down, and you tw guys can lead the armies.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 10:54 | 2598649 Doubleguns
Doubleguns's picture

The libertarians can umpire.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 09:17 | 2598390 JailBank
JailBank's picture

If I recall Obama's last ridiculous budget didn't get a single democat vote. If the defacto head of the party can't get one single vote from his party then there is an issue. Not to mention that when Obama came in to office with a super majority he still didn't pass a budget. Just saying is all.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 08:31 | 2598301 overmedicatedun...
overmedicatedundersexed's picture

gee I thought the BLACK HOLE was when OBUMA dropped his pants..LOL

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 06:22 | 2598111 rsnoble
rsnoble's picture

I don't buy the fact the great recession ended in 2009.  Perhaps job losses slowed down, but trillions have been thrown at the problem with little result.

Funny how know one takes that into account.  We're in a modern day depression imo, and another slowdown in that.

Also, the clowns assuming 208,000 jobs per month are in la la land.  That's like the union bosses telling everyone is fine and dandy when they have 25% unemployment and yet need full unemployment and 10% returns to fully fund pensions. Yet everything is ok?

Things are so bad..........everyone is either overly optimistic because they are stupid and/or they are flat out lieing.

Oh and let's not forget all of the little war projects and what they could turn into.  

Last but not least SP 450 would certainly cool hiring moods.  Don't laugh, without the massive Fed intervention we'd already be there and it's still a huge magnet that requires manipulation to no end this day.


Mon, 07/09/2012 - 06:32 | 2598121 overmedicatedun...
overmedicatedundersexed's picture

rsnoble funny..the trillions you write about did what they were intended: to keep the NWO elite solvent, if you think they were to heal the economy of any country well see my other posts on brain washing.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 06:19 | 2598106 Snakeeyes
Snakeeyes's picture

The Obama Administration and Democrats have increased dependency rather than unblocking job creation. They are Socialists are care more about the environment and regulations than job creation. Simple.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 06:40 | 2598135 forrestdweller
forrestdweller's picture

a clear case of primitive thinking. there are only good and bad, right and wrong.

probably a fan of mr. Bush.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 08:05 | 2598247 BeetleBailey
BeetleBailey's picture

I can spot an Obama throne licker a mile away.

Can't you douchebags stand on your own two feet and take blame like adults - or do you have to - MUST YOU - blame Bush each and every tyime.


I laugh at the poor dumb bastards that have to use others to blame for their own shortcomings.

Obama's a cunt. Politicians - by definition - are cunts. Lying cunts. Obama needs to man up; something the cunt has never done his entire life. Bush went along with these cunts in Congress and signed all the shit they put on his desk. Plus, the bastard and his own Veep - Dickless Chainsaw, started a fucking war for the MIC.

Until we the people hold these cunts responsible for ALLLLLLLLL their actions, and demand REAL change - the same shit will get spewed at us.

Political hacks know better than to confront me; I leave them bleeding in the gutter.


Mon, 07/09/2012 - 08:10 | 2598258 forrestdweller
forrestdweller's picture

you don't know your ass from a hole in the ground.

and you seem to be obsessed with genitals. could be a case of sexual frustration.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 08:18 | 2598274 BeetleBailey
BeetleBailey's picture

Sure I do. My ass is attached to me, and their are several holes in the ground outside.

Obsessed with genitals? No, that would be you; obsessed with political douchebags that lie from birth.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 08:43 | 2598320 bobnoxy
bobnoxy's picture

Your comments aren't just stupid. You blew past stupid doing 90 in a school zone. Likely as fast as your rusty old 4 wheel drive pickup of a mind could go. The level of your discourse says it all. Dead nuts fucking stoopid.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 05:54 | 2598093 overmedicatedun...
overmedicatedundersexed's picture

the power to brain wash a population has so many more tools than in the past. If Hitler had the same tech we would all be speaking german.

there are simple solutions to the problems America has. it is of course constantly repeated that these problems are not solvable, too complex, too many people for the jobs available , or the funny one about running outta energy.

no the unstated problem is: the current corrupt elite's wealth and power cannot be maintained and also solve the economic and social problems of America.

The elite must pay for their wealth and blood before the system can restore balance here in America.

the rest of the world is not our problem is the first thing to understand.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 08:35 | 2598311 AnAnonymous
AnAnonymous's picture

in US citizenism, the King class is the US citizen middle class.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 05:54 | 2598092 forrestdweller
forrestdweller's picture

the real global problem is overpopulation. most of the bog problems in the world can be brought back to this fact.

the human population has grown to fast en is now to big for our global economic system. a part of the population falls out off the system, and there will be increasingly more people dropping out of the system.

from a biologist's perspective, it's is very clear what is going to happen the next decades.

Thu, 07/12/2012 - 12:13 | 2610136 shuckster
shuckster's picture

Overpopulation is subjective. How many are too many people? The world was filled with war and violence and struggle when there were only 7 million people. Now it's filled with those that there are 7 billion... War is the old solution to over population, and it works quite nicely. I say we need more of it, not less

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 08:36 | 2598313 AnAnonymous
AnAnonymous's picture

The US citizen population is too big for the world to sustain.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 09:56 | 2598515 forrestdweller
forrestdweller's picture

too big or too fat?

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 09:21 | 2598405 LawsofPhysics
LawsofPhysics's picture

Yes, especially in China.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 04:51 | 2598069 BlackholeDivestment
BlackholeDivestment's picture

...if you buy sell or trade the black hole, it's not as bad as if you provide labor for it. In that case you polish the bullet in the Suicide Vampire Squids gun. With the New World Order Global Borderless Claim of Dominion above freedom and independence, the New Secular Socialism of Rosemary's Baby Care is a universal tax and another mark of the beast from which not even idle hands can escape. The seal of Contempt is now upon all Americans. Americans are in the black hole and the only way out is through civil war against the SkyNet rise of the machines or rapture. This is just a fact that nobody can deny. Americans are stupid and pathetic fools, hell bound, and there are not enough real Christians to preserve the spirit of the Constitution. It is time for judgment to come upon the nation, as it now stands in contempt and equally yoked among all nations. 

Time to die ...bitchez ...and time for the 1% and the 99% to perish that have rejected the risen mercy. Haa haaa haaa haaa, black hole bitchez. Aaah haa haa haa.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 03:21 | 2598032 silverdragon
silverdragon's picture

The best solution for those that can travel overseas is to find work overseas. Hundreds of thousands of Americans are doing it already. While you are overseas top up on Gold and Silver and when everything resets go back to the US and your Gold and Silver will get you serious buying power as the dollar will have devalued to brass Razoos.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 03:20 | 2598027 TheObsoleteMan
TheObsoleteMan's picture

The jobs that created the american middle class as we have known it, have either been replaced by technology or have been outsourced to foreign labor NEVER to return. In fact, the last of the hold outs will be gone within the next 5-10 years. This country will then resemble a third world country {with leadership and debts to match}. In many ways, it allready does. Globally, there simply are not enough jobs to go around. Unemployment is going much higher, and will stay that way. TPTB understand this, although they will never admit this to the public. I can only think of a handful of sectors that have kept pace with inflation over the last twenty years, and this is because they either have government contracts, are government themselves, or are in sectors that have government subsidies. 90% can be traced to federal spending in/on those sectors. Those that deal exclusively with the private sector have been seeing margin compression for years now.  There is only one way out of this mess, and that is WW3 {with limited nukes, as much as that is possible}. TPTB refer to all of this surplus labor as: USELESS EATERS.  They want to reduce population world-wide. They get more bang for their buck {no pun intended} by hitting the highest population densities, namely India, China, and other pacific rim nations. But don't think that europe and the USA will be spared, because they won't be. They would like to see a reduction by at LEAST 2/3rds! More would be even better {according to them}. I suspect this wil happen sooner than many think. And no, this isn't from Alex Jones, this is straight from the Club of Rome and other like minded elitist who form much of UN and NATO policy.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 06:39 | 2598133 Aussiekiwi
Aussiekiwi's picture

Hey Obsoleteman, with you with the American middle class out sourcing jobs, unemployment up permanently etc....but hang on amoment, using Nukes to hit India and China, and that is according to you 'the only way out of this mess' lol, your not playing with a full deck. Are you sure that nuking half the world is really the only way out, you can't possibly think of any other way? 

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 10:52 | 2598642 TheObsoleteMan
TheObsoleteMan's picture

Aussiekiwi; the nuke solution is NOT my idea, it is theirs. The USA will not nuke India, Pakistan will {and India will retaliate}. The USA will nuke China though. The best way to screw over your creditor after they have stopped loaning you money is to shoot them. I can thank of other ways to solve this crisis, even if it is to do nothing. But World War serves their purposes, and that is what we will get.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 10:49 | 2598637 Doubleguns
Doubleguns's picture

For the neocon republicrats or communist democins there is always chemical or biological. 2 other options for reducing 2/3rds of the population. I personally think starvation will win out in the end.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 05:44 | 2598086 overmedicatedun...
overmedicatedundersexed's picture

seems the brain washing of : Look America those jobs are never coming back, eat your peas. is every effective. Never question the mind set you have been fed by the propaganda of NWO.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 10:55 | 2598652 TheObsoleteMan
TheObsoleteMan's picture

Overmeds: Those jobs ARE NOT COMING BACK IN OUR LIFETIME. Even on the slim to none possibility that they would, they would return as minimum wage pay with no benefits. So why bother?

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 03:45 | 2598046 Tommy Gunner
Tommy Gunner's picture

The biggest population of useless eaters are the big fat lazy slobs that inhabit America.  Yes - the ones who sit on their sofas and guzzle gallons of cola, 241 pizzas while watching Fox TV, Dancing with the Stars and American Idol re-runs (yes that is how stupid they are). 

By wiping these losers out you could cull about 250 million people - not a bad start.

Thu, 07/12/2012 - 12:20 | 2610157 shuckster
shuckster's picture

That's a myth. No one in America does any of that

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 02:21 | 2597983 ebworthen
ebworthen's picture

You mean two part time jobs at $8.75 an hour with no benefits won't let me buy my dream home and a new GM?

Whiskey Tango Foxtrot?

They promised...

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 08:53 | 2598339 Jack Sheet
Jack Sheet's picture

Of course. You are eligible for any number of government loans.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 06:42 | 2598139 Aussiekiwi
Aussiekiwi's picture

Come to Aussie mate, $20 an hour for virtually any basic job, Perth is the place at the moment, great climate, great standard of living.

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 09:33 | 2598443 ghenny
ghenny's picture

Except its in Australia, thousands of miles from where most of our life together on this planet is happening.  Australia, while a very good country is like living on the moon for most of us who like to be in the thick of the cultural, economic and political action that drives our world.  

Mon, 07/09/2012 - 02:04 | 2597963 bigwavedave
bigwavedave's picture

Way too much focus on "JOBS" - Employ a third worlder like Mitt does and charge it back to your employer after you move 'On Contract' 

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