Grim news from the Wall Street Journal:
“The U.S. job market notched its weakest monthly gain in more than five years, knocking down expectations for a Federal Reserve rate increase and stirring worries about the seven-year-old economic expansion.
Employers added 38,000 jobs in May, the weakest performance since September 2010, the Labor Department said Friday. The unemployment rate, obtained from a separate survey of households, fell to 4.7% from 5% in April largely due to a steep decline in labor-force participation.
Revisions to previous payroll data showed employers added a combined 59,000 fewer jobs in April and March than previously reported. That brought average monthly job growth in the past three months to 116,000, a sharp slowdown from the average growth of 219,000 over the prior 12 months.”
Economists had forecast payrolls rising by 164,000 in May and the unemployment rate falling to 4.9 percent.
And more perspective: “A record 94,708,000 Americans were not in the labor force in May — 664,000 more than in April — and the labor force participation rate dropped two-tenths of a point to 62.6 percent, near its 38-year low, the Labor Department’s Bureau of Labor Statistics reported on Friday.
When President Obama took office in January 2009, 80,529,000 Americans were not participating in the labor force; since then, 14,179,000 Americans have left the workforce — some of them retiring and some just quitting because they can’t find work.”
As I have stated numerous times over the years, the government’s stranglehold on small businesses in the form of wage meddling, over regulation, and tax increases have kept the economy from being able to recover properly. It will still continue to limp along until policy changes are made.