Jack Dunn - Reclaiming Common Sense

The past month was a mess in the news media. People were talking about North Korea, President Trump's First 100 Days, and ignoring the economic data that was being released . Jobs. Yawn. Housing. Meh. Inflation. Yeah, so what. Retail sales, whatever.  Weekly unemployment claims at a 17 year low. There are more important things to discuss - like how desperately we need tax reform (something that hasn't been done since Reagan was President.) The readers of this column appreciate information on the economy.

(April 1) The most read column of the month was the review of the top ten columns of March.  The Top Ten Columns of March included a column from October regarding "Obama(s)care,"  numerous articles regarding the March Jobs report, numerous weeks in review columns, and articles on housing and retail sales.

(April 11)There have been numerous discussions of which sectors are growing. There are eleven sectors that the Current Employment Statistics data measures. Ten Sectors Added Workers Last Month. The problem we have is that three sectors have fewer workers than they had during March 2009 - during the recession. Five sectors have fewer workers than they had during July 2007 - the peak of the pre-recession jobs market.

(April 10) The jobs report revealed that we added jobs, over a million non-seasonally adjusted jobs, saw a drop in unemployment, and an increase in employment.   We also saw a surge in the levels, plural, or people working multiple jobs.The are over 8 million people working multiple jobs, right now, and over 2.1 million people working two part-time jobs. Both are records for the month of March.

(April 3) The payroll company ADP releases its jobs report in advance of the Government's Employment Situation Report.The report provides seasonally adjusted data on a regional and sector basis. Last months ADP report for February caught people off-guard. That data was revised slightly lower with the release of the ADP report for March."What to expect from ADP this week" examined the monthly data changes and annual data changes and projected.

(April 15) The first week in review column to hit the top ten for April was the Week in Review article for April 15 - maybe you were busy that week working on your taxes. This week in review covered details in the Jobs report that you may not have heard elsewhere.

(April 1) The second Week in review column to hit the top ten article for the month was the week in review article for the week ending April 1st. This week was a short week after a three day weekend for my family. The April Fool's Day in review column addressed the final week of March articles.

(April 22)Week in Review - Too Much Winning   If it bleeds, it leads. It if it is good news for President Trump and for the consumer then it isn't good news for media. How can we be tired of winning if nobody relays the score to us?

(April 6) There was a considerable amount of news this month: The confirmation of Judge Gorsuch, the Chemical attacks on the people of Syria, the US enforcing the "Red Line" that former President Obama drew in the sand, and the jobs report. There was also talk of the Federal Reserve starting to unwind Quantitative Easing. "Is Quantitative Acceleration Coming" reminded reader of the extreme measures that Congress took to tackle the recessionary conditions that President Obama inherited and the actions that the Federal Reserve did to make money cheaper, and balloon the Federal Debt.

(April 5) We have now received strong back to back ADP job reports. "Strong March ADP Report" We saw monthly growth in nine out of ten sectors. We saw annual growth in eight out of ten sectors. The question is did we see seasonally adjusted job growth recorded in those same sectors in the employment situation report?

(April 27) Even though it was released at the end of the month "What to Expect from First Quarter GDP" garnered a bit of attention. Was the report going to be as dismal as other hoped it would be? What were we going to see with regard to the headline Annualized GDP number versus the rear looking Real GDP?

So what was learned during the past month? Housing is stronger than it has been during the past decade. Existing home sales have almost rebounded. New home sales are still stuck in the 1980s and 1990s. We saw the best February and March Current Population Survey Jobs months, non-seasonally adjusted, since 2003. Unemployment is down, participation is up. Some sectors have recovered to pre-recession levels, some are surging, some are lagging. Men are still working fewer full-time jobs than they were during July 2007 - nearly a decade ago.  Also, there are still people who understand....

It's the economy.