22 votes

United States only created 20,000 new jobs in February after 180,000 were estimated

15 comments

  1. [8]
    Yugioh_Mishima Link
    And that's after a change in Bureau of Labor Statistics formulas; otherwise job growth would probably have been negative. Combine this report with all the recent layoffs at companies like...

    And that's after a change in Bureau of Labor Statistics formulas; otherwise job growth would probably have been negative.

    Combine this report with all the recent layoffs at companies like Buzzfeed, General Motors, Verizon, Activision, Tesla, etc. and it's starting to look more like corporate America is hunkering down for a storm than a case of the video games/digital media/electric vehicles/etc. industries all having unexpected and unrelated difficulties at the same time.

    Further reading: US “retail apocalypse” expected to exceed annual high with more than 1,100 store closures announced in one day

    13 votes
    1. [7]
      tiredlemma (edited ) Link Parent
      Admittedly this is anecdata, but there are almost 2,000 unfilled jobs across the technology division of my employer that have been sitting open for a long, long time. We're in the Boston-NYC...

      Admittedly this is anecdata, but there are almost 2,000 unfilled jobs across the technology division of my employer that have been sitting open for a long, long time. We're in the Boston-NYC (Edit: Actually, just about everywhere with satellites and regional offices. Most of these jobs are in the HQ area) corridor of the US, pay above market rates, have excellent benefits, etc. so I don't think it's that. We're not the sexiest company in the world, but any one of these roles could support a family in the area. I have to use foreign contractors to keep the engines running--qualified resumes just aren't coming through in the necessary numbers. I know I lose a double digit percentage of candidates because of business casual dress code... Hiring sucks.

      Not saying there aren't significant underlying issues in the economy, far from it, I see them every day. Just pointing out that there is a lot of life sustaining work available that folks either don't want or aren't ready to do.

      3 votes
      1. [2]
        Yugioh_Mishima Link Parent
        I work in tech in the Tri-State Area, and I can almost guarantee that this is a bigger deal than you realize. And you’ve partially diagnosed the issue by mentioning the dress code. You can be on...

        We're not the sexiest company in the world

        I work in tech in the Tri-State Area, and I can almost guarantee that this is a bigger deal than you realize. And you’ve partially diagnosed the issue by mentioning the dress code. You can be on the East Coast, you can be a non-tech company, but you can’t be both and still attract top US talent no matter how much you pay.

        Work culture is hugely important to everyone I know in my field. I know so many people who could easily get (and have had) senior positions at ADP, BCBS, JPMorgan Chase, etc. But maintaining a thousand-year old codebase for a required 9-5 Monday-Friday while wearing slacks and loafers in a sterile cubicle under too-bright fluorescent lighting after commuting from a lousy NJ suburb is such a soul-sucking experience that everyone who can afford to avoid it like a plague does. (And even if that’s not the way your company is, that’s how people imagine it.) A coworker who left for a higher-paying job and then came back at his previous salary told me his breaking point was being required to email ZIPs back and forth any time he needed to collaborate on a file ”for recordkeeping purposes”. Being stuck in the ‘90s doesn’t fly with people who know what they’re doing, and it seems like every legacy company is.

        8 votes
        1. tiredlemma Link Parent
          Amen, a thousand times amen. Enterprise stigma is monstrously difficult to overcome. Completely agree with sentiment/comment here.

          Amen, a thousand times amen. Enterprise stigma is monstrously difficult to overcome. Completely agree with sentiment/comment here.

      2. [4]
        onyxleopard Link Parent
        To think our economy is affected by idiotic notions like “people who wear collared shirts are more qualified”. We need another enlightenment to shed this kind of sheer idiocy.

        I know I lose a double digit percentage of candidates because of business casual dress code...

        To think our economy is affected by idiotic notions like “people who wear collared shirts are more qualified”. We need another enlightenment to shed this kind of sheer idiocy.

        2 votes
        1. [3]
          tiredlemma Link Parent
          It has nothing to do with qualification and everything to do with a willingness to “play ball” with the culture.

          It has nothing to do with qualification and everything to do with a willingness to “play ball” with the culture.

          3 votes
          1. [2]
            vord Link Parent
            And enforcing "business casual" is a warning flag to many that the company's culture is likely a toxic cesspool of traditional business management, which comes with a lot of other baggage and...

            And enforcing "business casual" is a warning flag to many that the company's culture is likely a toxic cesspool of traditional business management, which comes with a lot of other baggage and inflexibility.

            Also, my employer has also had trouble finding qualified candidates, in part due to very outdated ideas about how to advertise jobs to those who are qualified for them. I'm willing to bet you're facing a similar situation.

            3 votes
            1. tiredlemma Link Parent
              Indeed! It's been a battle just to get engineering titles for the roles instead of generic advisor titles. Trying to modernize a tech org. inside of a huge enterprise is definitely between a rock...

              Indeed! It's been a battle just to get engineering titles for the roles instead of generic advisor titles. Trying to modernize a tech org. inside of a huge enterprise is definitely between a rock and a hard place, no matter how much money is thrown at it because the "business" is inflexible on so many fronts. It's very frustrating and makes me sad--some of the work being done is genuinely pretty cool and not your typical legacy monster and it's next to impossible to get the word out about this.

  2. [3]
    Algernon_Asimov Link
    It's a bit hard to get concerned about one low month - especially when the author's own graph shows two similarly low months in the past 3 years. One data point does not a trend make. Even two...

    It's a bit hard to get concerned about one low month - especially when the author's own graph shows two similarly low months in the past 3 years. One data point does not a trend make. Even two data points aren't quite a trend. Come back when there's 3 consecutive months of low growth, and then start shouting "The sky is falling!"

    7 votes
    1. [2]
      Yugioh_Mishima Link Parent
      I think the point of concern isn’t the low growth per se, but rather that they missed the mark by a factor of nine. BLS estimates have been pretty reliable; for them to have been caught off guard...

      I think the point of concern isn’t the low growth per se, but rather that they missed the mark by a factor of nine. BLS estimates have been pretty reliable; for them to have been caught off guard to such a significant degree is the real story.

      Maybe it’s my pessimistic nature, but it makes me think of animals fleeing a natural disaster before humans know it’s happening.

      4 votes
      1. drg Link Parent
        The 180k forecast was not from the BLS, it was the median estima-te from market participants. The 20k figure was a surprise for sure, but there is plenty to suggest it was just an outlier. Let’s...

        The 180k forecast was not from the BLS, it was the median estima-te from market participants. The 20k figure was a surprise for sure, but there is plenty to suggest it was just an outlier. Let’s wait for the next few months :)

        5 votes
  3. [4]
    RapidEyeMovement Link
    One word: Recession It will take awhile for the data to all come out and the current administration is going to doctor the F* out of those numbers, but I think we have currently entered one.

    One word: Recession

    It will take awhile for the data to all come out and the current administration is going to doctor the F* out of those numbers, but I think we have currently entered one.

    2 votes
    1. [3]
      Gully_Foyles Link Parent
      I don't think we've hit one yet, the question is how long will it take? The average baby boomer will retire by 2022, they'll be taking all their investment dollars too and shifting them into...

      I don't think we've hit one yet, the question is how long will it take? The average baby boomer will retire by 2022, they'll be taking all their investment dollars too and shifting them into T-bills and other low risk investments.

      The stock market will not be able to weather this, but in Congress's view it needs to weather this because over the last twenty years you have seen tax returns and the stock market correlate more and more closely and move in lock-step to one another. The government needs the stock market to go up because taxes are dependent on it.

      We are definitely going to see them drop interest rates and we will probably see Quantitative Easing rounds 5 and 6. This may give the economy some legs in the short term, but you will ultimately see the US dragged kicking and screaming into recession by 2022 at the latest in my view, but more realistically Q4 2019 - Q2 2020

      4 votes
      1. [2]
        The_Fad Link Parent
        What are T-bills, if you don't mind me asking?

        What are T-bills, if you don't mind me asking?

        1 vote