Good News? September Jobs Report


#1

I’ll start this one. Here’s the actual report:

https://www.bls.gov/news.release/empsit.nr0.htm

Jobs created down sharply to 134,000. That seems fine for me since we’re at full employment. Unemployment down to 3.7%. Fine. Wages up 8 cents. Not keeping up with inflation year on year. Labor participation rate stayed the same. Literally exactly the same as when Trump took office. But I don’t care about the labor participation rate. July and August jobs revised up which is good. Pretty big jump though in involuntary part time employees. Not sure what that is. Overall looks like a fine report for full employment. 134,000 about keeps up with population growth. Not sure how much the hurricane affected this report. Wages are still very concerning.


#2

Good need. Every time jobs are added it’s good news.

Wages aren’t going anywhere soon


#3

Month after month, this number continues to frustrate:

In September, average hourly earnings for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls rose by 8 cents to
$27.24. Over the year, average hourly earnings have increased by 73 cents, or 2.8 percent. Average hourly
earnings of private-sector production and nonsupervisory employees increased by 6 cents to $22.81 in
September. (See tables B-3 and B-8.)

I doubt there’s much hidden slack still in the job market, so there’s not a clear explanation for why wages aren’t growing faster than inflation.


#4

Definitely not a bad report. Not sure I’d call it good, though.

Still waiting for the trillion dollars we gave to corporations to trickle down to the common man in wage growth. Though I am a little surprised that hasn’t been a bit stronger that with full employment, employees should start to have their choice of jobs and companies have to incentivize to recruit people.


#5

Yep. I mean we shouldn’t expect massive jobs numbers at this level of employment, but it defies logic that wages aren’t growing. I’d also be interested in seeing wage growth across income quintiles.


#6

Corporations have been sitting on record profits for years and years now…even with the “uncertainty” under Obama, and the “suffocating regulations” under Obama. Even with Obamacare. And to a greater extent now with the yoooooge, permanent corporate tax cuts.

Money is flowing to the top and staying there. Trickle down isn’t happening.


#7

Exactly. 130k jobs added is fine. We’re at full employment, so I’m not expecting 200k+ anymore.

But I’d expect to see growth across many incomes. I’m always reading about how trade jobs have shortages, and in my industry I’m getting job offers regularly from other companies, and they only way they’d be able to pry me away would be massive income and title increase. Granted that’s an anecdote, but with full employment I have to imagine that’s pretty typical.


#8

Right, and I think all of us who can look at the situation rationally can see that, but even with those forces at play, it’s amazing that wage growth still hasn’t broken through at all. If there was ever a time to reframe the political debate away from identity and towards class, it’s right freaking now.


#9

Well of course it isn’t happening. Trickle-down is a demonstrable failure, at least from the standpoint of actually having money reach down to the bottom. As you said, companies have been sitting on record profits for years now, yet somehow they needed a tax cut.

If the goal is to concentrate wealth at the top, it’s an unequivocal success.


#10

5 years ago I could hire pretty much anyone I wanted and almost guarantee they’d be a good worker. At this point I literally have to take every applicant because postings will go unfilled for longer than we can wait. We could easily be poaching workers from other companies but we’re unwilling to move our starting salary at all. It’s been the same starting salary for 9 years.


#11

I’ve got an idea why…


#12

same, I just didn’t want red hatters to come in and shut down debate


#13

Curious - do you set that salary? Or is it some archaic HR policy?

My company was like that when I first started. Had obnoxiously stiff pay scales, that were artificially tied to years of experience, etc. The problem with that was you may have someone with 10 years experience (when role “required” 15), but who was a rising star and was more capable than many people with 30 years experience. But we could never hire those rising star types, because our offer to them would be insulting.

Thankfully they’ve moved away from that over the past couple of years, and we’ve been able to pluck amazing people from amazing companies.


#14

As best as I’ve figured, our branch’s VP and HR executive has broad authority to set the pay scale, but they have to justify most of it to corporate (40,000+ employee company).

There are some oddities. I was given a massive pay increase to take a promotion because people kept leaving the job. The previous pay scale was a 5% bump from entry level salary. I got a 33% bump after having demonstrated no special ability to excel in role. The only reason I got the bump was because the hiring manager threatened to quit if they didn’t do something about it, and she is probably considered the best manager in the company. In an odd twist of fate, I’m not playing the same game, giving a credible threat to quit or transfer, if they don’t give my best employee more than her scheduled 2% pay increase. They’re playing chicken with me though, even though they know I have a good offer on the table for a rival company.


#15

This is false I was told Obamacare was a job killer


#16

We didn’t give anything to corporations. And trickle down economics has nothing to do with money giveaway.


#17

The only trickle down that’s working is through investments in the stock market. If you’re working for a living and can’t afford to invest heavily, not so much.


#18

That’s awesome for you that you were able to secure a 33% increase!! It sounds like you’re trapped by the corporate overlords in their ivory towers trying to save every last penny at the expense of rewarding good employees or equipping the company to recruit/pluck great employees as well.


#19

So the corporations that got a tax cut didn’t get anything? And the entire sales pitch of trickle down is that the money given to those at the top will trickle down to those at the bottom. It’s called “trickle down” for a reason. Yet every time we’ve tried it, it’s only resulted in a redistribution of wealth concentrated to the top.


#20

Exactly. For the vast majority of people, they’re not seeing any benefit.