03 June 2011 15:17 [Source: ICIS news]
In its monthly workforce report, the department noted that May’s mediocre 54,000 jobs increase was in stark contrast to gains that had averaged around 220,000 new hires in the three prior months.
The department said that private sector employers added 83,000 workers last month, but that figure too was much lower than the average of 244,000 new business hires seen in the previous three months.
In addition, that modest private sector workforce improvement was in part offset by some 28,000 job losses in local government. Most
More worrisome for the overall
The downturn in manufacturing jobs parallels recent data showing that new orders for machinery have declined, an indication that producers are reluctant to make new investments for fear product demand will not develop.
The National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB), which represents small firms that typically do most of the hiring, said that its own data indicate that “meaningful job creation on Main Street has collapsed”.
Economists put part of the blame for May’s poor employment numbers on increasing fuel costs and bad weather, including tornadoes and floods that plagued large portions of the country last month.But other analysts worry that there is a fundamental weakness and uncertainty underlying the wobbly recovery.
Paul Hodges studies key influencers shaping the chemical industry in Chemicals and the Economy
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