Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Economic Disinformation Keeps Financial Markets Up.....A MUST READ!

Economic Disinformation Keeps Financial Markets Up

The extraordinary decline in the labor force participation rate indicates shrinking opportunities for the American labor force. No economist should ever have accepted the claim that the economy was in recovery while participation in the labor force was declining.

The officially documented decline in the labor force participation rate casts additional doubt on the claimed increases in payroll jobs. If jobs are growing, the labor force participation rate should not be declining.

The government's economic statistical agencies are under pressure not to roil the financial markets. Consequently, initial reports, which are always the headline reports, are as close as possible to the "consensus forecast" prepared by economists in the financial sector, whose jobs are to maintain a good atmosphere for financial instruments.

This practice results in optimistic advanced estimates and first estimates. The real reporting comes later in revisions. For example, the headline was 223,000 new jobs, recovery on track, stock market up. What was not reported by the media is that the prior month's (March) payroll jobs growth was cut to 85,000 jobs, substantially below population growth.

The same thing happens with the reporting of GDP growth. The first quarter GDP advanced estimate was kept in positive territory with a 0.2%–two-tenths of one percent–growth. When the revisions arrive, which we already know will be negative GDP growth due to the trade figure, they will not receive the same attention.

There are many additional problems with the economic reporting.

According to the payroll jobs report oil and gas extraction lost 3,300 jobs in April. This low number is inconsistent with what we know about layoffs from fracking operations. According to Challenger Gray, a private firm that tracks job cuts announced by corporations, in April 20,675 jobs were lost as a result of falling oil prices. That is more than six times the loss reported by the payroll jobs report.

Challenger Gray reports that during the first four months of this year, corporations have announced 201,796 job cuts. Obviously, corporations are not creating new jobs. That is why the BLS looks to waitresses, bartenders, remodeling contractors, government, and social services for employment growth.

Jobs offshoring has shriveled the employment opportunities for Americans. These shriveled opportunities are largely responsible for stagnation and decline in real median family incomes, for the falling labor force participation rate, for the rising inequality in the income and wealth distribution, and for student loans that cannot be repaid from the lowly paid jobs available. 

Corporations and Wall Street in pursuit of short-term profits have given the economy away. Much of the former US economy now belongs to China and India. Corporate executives and shareholders got rich off of this give-away.

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