Wednesday, October 14, 2015



The chart below overlays the monthly change in the number of the employed (red bars, in thousands, right scale) and the unemployment rate (black line, left scale). One thing is clear: even as the unemployment rate fell from 5.3% to 5.1% over the last four months, the total number of employed only increased by 5,000. And even as the unemployment rate remained flat from August to September, the number of employed plunged by 236,000:
If this worsening trend continues, it would be truly chilling because the Fed still has the interest rate at near zero, along with nearly every country in the developed world, and QE is still the standard in Europe, Japan, and elsewhere. Central banks have kept their monetary foot on the gas pedal and floored it for seven years straight. Governments around the world, including in the US, despite all the hoopla about "austerity," have piled on historic amounts of debt at dizzying rates in the greatest global stimulus package of all times.

And yet, the US economy is dropping below stall speed, with employment showing signs of deterioration, while asset prices, after seven years of "wealth effect," are teetering precariously at ludicrous heights.

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