Jobs data the worst of the year
By Ann Belser
Unemployment was up, wages were down and the number of jobs created was lower than anyone expected in the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics report on May's employment situation released Friday.
While economists were not counting on job creation last month to rival the growth the nation experienced during the first quarter when net job gains averaged 225,000 a month, they also didn't predict it would come in as low as it did -- a net gain of 69,000 additional jobs.
Adding insult to injury, job growth numbers for the previous two months were revised downward. March gains were revised to 143,000 jobs from a previously estimated 154,000 and April's job growth fell from the originally reported 115,000 jobs to 77,000.
One sure way to tell that the monthly report was a disappointment was to read the first sentence of the chairman of the White House Council of Economic Advisor's response to the news. Alan B. Krueger opened by saying, "Problems in the job market were long in the making and will not be solved overnight."
He did note that the private sector has added jobs for the last 27 months, but added, "There is much more work that remains to be done."
Wall Street disliked the report, which was released before the market opened Friday morning. Before noon the Dow Jones industrial average had fallen to 12,158.49, down 234.96 from the close on Thursday. The Dow closed down 275 points at 12,118. The S&P 500 index closed down 32 points at 1,278, and the Nasdaq composite index closed down 80 points at 2,747...
...Jim John, chief operating officer for job search engine Beyond.Com in King of Prussia, Montgomery County, said his company expected a lean jobs report because of a slowdown in help-wanted postings.
Read full article.