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The Washington Post has apparently woken up to the fact that President Obama's economy -- at least as its related to job creation -- has been a mirage. After noting that the August unemployment rate dropped only because 312,000 people dropped out of the labor market, the Post reports that the three-month average of the number of jobs created has dropped by nearly 40,000 over this same time last year:
Consider this: The nation has averaged 148,000 new jobs a month for the last three months. The number was 160,000 for the last six months, and 184,000 a month over the last year. That looks to me like a downward trend, no two ways about it. It’s certainly not the gradual acceleration that most mainstream economists have forecast as 2013 advances and the impact of tighter fiscal policy fades.
Compared to last month, 112,000 fewer people in America have a job.
If you are wondering how the unemployment rate can decrease as the numbers of jobs created also decreases, there is more on that here.
If you only looked at the headlines on Friday’s August jobs numbers, you’d think “Not bad!”
You would also be completely wrong.
Yes, the unemployment rate fell a notch to 7.3 percent, from 7.4 percent in July. Yes, the nation added 169,000 jobs, broadly consistent with the pattern of recent months.
Ignore the headlines. This was a very bad jobs report.