Reclaiming Common Sense

July Jobs Report Recorded Record Levels of FT Jobs and Workers

How Does President Trump Compare to Regan, Clinton, Bush, and Obama?

The ADP Private Sector Payroll report was released this past Wednesday. The Jobs Report, or Employment Situation was released this past  Friday. There was growth in all sectors except mining and Logging (Natural Resources) and Information (IT.)

  • There were 156,000 private sector payroll positions added during July and another 15 positions added to the combined May and June data. This was covered in the "July ADP Report" article.
  • This month we added 611,000 FT jobs and trimmed only 55,000 PT jobs. We have 1.451 million more full-time jobs and 667,000 fewer part-time jobs than last year. We have more people working this July than last July and more than have ever worked.  Full-time jobs spiked, and unemployment rose slightly from the June 2019 level. Even so, the unemployment rate was the lowest for the month of July since July 1969.This was covered in the article "Record Level of Full-time Jobs and Workers."
  • We saw a spike in workers and wages during July. We have a record level of private sector workers right now, non-seasonally adjusted. We should see another record set, non-seasonally adjusted, during either November or December. Seven of eleven sectors are at record levels for employment. This was covered in "July Workers Up, Wages Up, Record Highs."

There has been "much hay" made about how President Trump is doing compared to his final thirty months in office. It started during the 2018 election when former President Obama tried to compare his final two years in office with President Trump's first 21 months in office. That is not a fair comparison. This column produced an article comparing President Trump's first 24 with former President Obama's final 24. Now the discussion is the President's first 30 months compared to former President Obama's final 30 months in office (after a number of January Revisions to the CES data.) President Trump won. How is President Trump doing compared to former Presidents Reagan, Clinton, George W Bush (Bush 43 or GWB,) Obama?

President Trump has overseen the addition of 9.138 Million Full-time jobs. He has also seen the workforce population grow by 5.143 million potential workers. He has also seen the number of unemployed workers fall by 1.593 million workers and the number of part-time jobs fall by 1.280 million. There have been 7.858 million jobs created for 5.143 million workers. He has added 6.265 million participants. This will be important.

Former President Obama saw a net job decrease and net Unemployment increase during his first 30 months in office. This may be why he doesn't want to compare his first 30 months with President Trump's first 30 months in office. Former President Obama lost 5.038 million full-time jobs as off January 2010, and was still in a full-time hole of 3.142 million during January 201. Former President Obama was in the hole 56,000 full-time jobs and only up 3,000 part-time jobs for 4.932 million new potential workers. "All of the participants added" were unemployed participants."

Former President Bush was able to add full-time jobs and trim part-time jobs. Bush 43 also saw a rise in unemployed workers. The former President saw 2.918 million full-time jobs created, 596,000 part-time jobs trimmed, and unemployment rise by 2.672 million workers. This is a net increase of 4.994 million participants for 7.6 million workers. This cause participation to fall.

Former President Clinton added full-time workers and part-time workers while trimming unemployed workers.  Some will say that President Clinton was more successful than President Trump in job creation: 9.52 million jobs versus 7.858 million jobs. How much is an additional 900,000 full-time jobs worth? President Clinton also trimmed the unemployment level by 2.266 million workers. The former President had 7.892 million unemployed workers compared to President Trump at 6.556 million unemployed workers.  There were 7.254 million more participants. It all matters.

Former President Reagan saw increases in unemployed workers, part-time jobs, and full-time jobs. Former President Reagan saw 4.180 million new full-time obs created, plus nearly another million part-time jobs. There was also a spike of 1.961 million unemployed workers. Reagan was able to add more total jobs than workers. The number of participants surged by 7.095 million participants for 4.653 million new workers. 

Participation Matters. If you compare the participation rates of former Presidents Regan, Clinton, George W Bush and Obama, and President Trump, the the "best participation rate" with the "best unemployment rate" for a given July you will find that we are still missing millions of participants. If you hold the participation rate static with July 2007 then the effective unemployment rates for the third July were:

  • July 1983 - 12.37%
  • July 1995 - 5.76%
  • July 2003 - 7.41%
  • July 2011 - 13.37%
  • July 2019 - 9.63%

We are not at full employment. The good news is that the participation rate curve is no longer falling lock-step with the unemployment rate curve. Participation is a function of population. If you look at the "Four Presidents at 96 months" article you will find a huge upward correction to the workforce population under Clinton during the January of his final year in office, and a downward revision for former President Obama during his final month in office.

Size of the economy matters. Former President Obama ended up adding 10.1 million jobs for 19.3 million workers.Former President Bush only added 4.25 million jobs for 20.8 million workers. Former President Clinton added 19.153 million jobs for 19.926 million workers, up from a base of 127 million participants.  Former President Reagan added 17.4 million jobs for 16.5 million workers to a base of 106.8 million participants.

President Trump has added more full-time jobs after 30 months in office than any of his predecessors. Former President Obama ended up adding a net9.2 million full-time jobs from his first inauguration to when he left office. President Trump has just about done this during his first 30 months in office. Where will he be during Month 44?

It's the Economy.