Unemployment hits 8.2% and Growth Stalls, But America Shouldn't Panic
The U.S. economy created only 69,000 jobs in May, much lower than expected and all but confirming that the U.S. economy will have its third consecutive spring slowdown.
The Labor Department reported Friday that the unemployment rate edged up to 8.2%, its first increase in 11 months. The Labor Department estimate was roughly 50,000 less than was private sector forecasts from a day earlier.
The Labor Department “estimate” was the lowest increase in a year and well below the 150,000 jobs that economists had expected. Additionally, the prior two months' numbers were revised downward supporting concerns the recovery is slowing. The jobs report comes a day after the government reported the U.S. economy expanded at a 1.9% annualized rate in the first quarter.
As you might guess, both Romney and Obama were quick to comment on the news.
"Today's weak jobs report is devastating news for American workers and American families," Romney said in a statement shortly after the data was released.
The Obama administration said that while the jobs data was unacceptable, Congress needed to act to help the economy.
Unfortunately, neither Romney nor Obama took the high road offering either “encouragement to the nation” or mentioning even one means to assist the American economy quest for growth.
It is easy to point fingers when bad news arrives.
But let me ask you, considering the external factors such as recessionary pressures compounded by a banking crisis in the EU, a slowing Chinese economy, and emerging market difficulties, should not even slow growth be noted as a positive?
The United States economy, considering the global circumstances, is arguably holding its own fairly well.
I fully recognize that dozens of article have been written for PolicyMic proposing multiple stimulus actions.
As example, I remain on record being in favor of targeted jobs initiatives such as the Senate and House passing a multi-year transportation bill which could directly and indirectly open up new employment opportunities for nearly 1 million Americans.
I am in favor of “repatriating” American assets held abroad under terms of a short-term tax holiday, attempting to derive the potential benefit or returning over $1 trillion in capital into our economy.
But neither of these or countless other potential economic stimulus activities can insulate America’s economy form global contagions.
Whether we wish to face the facts or not, America’s economy will rise and fall on the tide of global activities we cannot control.
Leadership entails much more than pointing fingers when bad news arrives.
Leadership once recognized, the truth is often the best line of defense.