So, about that economy…

It’s actually getting a bit better.

As I discussed with Phil the other day, our Real GDP (the best kind of GDP) rose 5.7% last quarter, following a rise of 2.2%.

Add to that the latest job numbers, which claim 20,000 jobs lost (which is far less than the peak), but also a drop in the Unemployment Rate.  The commonly-used U3 measure dropped from 10.2% to 9.7%.  The problem there is, the U3 doesn’t measure people who have dropped out of the search for work, or who have just been looking too long, or are “underemployed”.  And so we take a look at the U6, and with businesses claiming to have cut 20,000 jobs, you’d expect the U6 to have risen slightly; the difference between it and the U3 having come from people dropping out of the search for work.  But rather, the U6 has dropped as well, from 17.3% to 16.5%.  The numbers are just coming in as it is, but if I had to take a stab at it, I’d suggest that the reason for the U6 dropping even faster than the U3 would be people who had dropped out of the job hunt now re-entering it.

So, things are looking up.  The unemployment numbers still aren’t pretty, but as always they’re one of the last things to rise out of a recession.  Also, considering that a good chunk of the rise in GDP was from companies replacing stock, I suspect we may see a new round of hiring coming up as manufacturers move product and can return to a fuller production schedule.

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  1. #1 by Phillip on February 5, 2010 - 10:27 AM

    I don’t know, the GDP increased, sure, but the GDP was still down 2.4% for the year.

    The numbers are looking better, but from what I’ve seen, I’m not sure where everything’s going. In December, we lost about 150,000 jobs. We no where made up that many in January.

    And remember, the companies may produce goods, but if no one is buying them, no recovery is going to happen. I personally think that we’re teetering. We’re right on the edge of either ending the recession or it’s going to be a W recession. Given that companies, being companies, are looking out for their interests first, I would bet more money on the W.

  2. #2 by Chadwick on February 5, 2010 - 8:26 PM

    The GDP may have been down for the year, but we are (hopefully) coming out of a recession. I mean, it was a lot of drop in the first two quarters, and then reasonable growth in the third, and that 5.7% growth, I guess we haven’t seen since 2004 or something.

    And I, for one, am purchasing plenty of goods. honestly, sales volume is fairly good, but things have been so heavily discounted to move them.

    Personally, I don’t think we’re gonna W, but we won’t know ’til it happens. I’m just saying, things are looking better than they have in years.

  3. #3 by Joshua on February 6, 2010 - 8:08 AM

    I’m certainly seeing more job opportunities cross my desk lately. That’s a huge change from 2009 when I saw barely one per month.

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