'Like A Home Inspection On A Money Pit': Economists React To November Jobs Report On Twitter
Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 245,000 jobs in November, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Friday.
The unemployment rate edged down to 6.7%.
Remote working grew in November, with 21.8% of employed people saying they teleworked, up from 21.2% in October. But 14.8 million people reported being unable to work because their employer closed or lost business due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Employment in transportation and warehousing increased by 145,000 jobs in November, including 82,000 couriers and messengers and 37,000 jobs in warehousing and storage. But the retail trade lost 35,000 jobs, which the Bureau of Labor Statistics said reflected less seasonal hiring in several retail industries.
The construction industry added 27,000 jobs in November, but employment in the sector is still 279,000 jobs below its February level.
Here's how economists and others reacted to the jobs report on Twitter.
Today's Employment Report shows in many ways that the labor market is moving sideways rather than improving. Employment, participation, those working part-time but wanting full-time... But, every month it just moves sideways, the problems solidify - becoming harder to fix.— Wendy Edelberg (@WendyEdelberg) December 4, 2020
We added 245,000 jobs in November, but the labor market remains in crisis. We lost so many jobs in March and April that even though we’ve now added jobs for 7 months in a row, we are still nearly 10 million jobs below where we were in February. 2/— Heidi Shierholz (@hshierholz) December 4, 2020
We are down 9.8 million jobs since Feb and growth is decelerating, likely to turn negative over the current month.— Aaron Sojourner (@aaronsojourner) December 4, 2020
For comparison, during the Great Recession, we lost fewer than 9 million jobs. pic.twitter.com/vuQaRhr0Wc
The takeaway: this is not an economy with the momentum to coast through the winter virus shock without more aid. The risk of backsliding is very, very high.— Adam Ozimek (@ModeledBehavior) December 4, 2020
The data is not being subtle about the need for more stimulus https://t.co/kTFUw9fKLU— Michael Madowitz (@mikemadowitz) December 4, 2020
Govt’s failure to pass new stimulus is tragic. At Nov rate of job creation, it would take almost 3 1/2 years to recover all jobs lost in pandemic.— Steven Rattner (@SteveRattner) December 4, 2020
W/o congressional action, all remaining pandemic UI programs will expire on Dec 26th. Millions of workers are depending on these programs (DOL reports 13.4 mil for the wk ending Nov 14). When they expire, millions of these workers & their families will be financially ruined. 7/— Heidi Shierholz (@hshierholz) December 4, 2020
Folks this jobs report should have their hair on fire in Congress. It’s not rocket science. The economy is fragile. The coronavirus is not contained. We risk deep financial scars to jobless workers and families.— Christine Romans (@ChristineRomans) December 4, 2020
And if you think an unemployment rate of 6.7% doesn't sound too bad, realize that this largely reflects millions of people dropping out of the labor force — millions more than in a typical downturn — because it's barely safe to leave their houses. pic.twitter.com/ZbqOwhYhwm— Justin Wolfers (@JustinWolfers) December 4, 2020
I've been looking at this report for six minutes now and still not seeing any silver lining.— Neil Irwin (@Neil_Irwin) December 4, 2020
Maybe "coulda been worse"?
Gawd, this whole report— Michael Madowitz (@mikemadowitz) December 4, 2020
it's like a home inspection on a money pit—Everytime I think I have my head around it there's another soft spot.
Diffusion index coming down a ton—job growth is much less widespread this month than last month and a year agohttps://t.co/bVMV9o2lSu https://t.co/9gn122AjjW
There's an interesting #ecommerce story in the payroll data: #Retail trade: -35K (seasonally adj)— Daniel Zhao (@DanielBZhao) December 4, 2020
Transportation & warehousing: +145K!
That's largely driven by:
Couriers & messengers: +82K
Warehousing & storage: +37K
Truck transport.: +13K#JobsReport #JobsDay 7/ pic.twitter.com/99CDZd6F7M
145k of the 344k jobs added in November were from transportation and warehousing industries.— Nick Bunker (@nick_bunker) December 4, 2020
That's over 40% of all new private sector jobs
This is what nags me about as a person who's generally upbeat about the US labor market trajectory. The gains we're seeing don't fully account for a large public health cost. It didn't need to be this way, but public policy failed. https://t.co/oiWStjXTPB— Guy Berger (@EconBerger) December 4, 2020
That said... we have vaccinations about to go into people's arms. I don't want to come of as polyannaish at a difficult/tragic time or dismiss the substantial economic pain many people are feeling, but the outlook could look pretty different in a 4-6 months. 2/2— Guy Berger (@EconBerger) December 4, 2020