Less Jobs

By Isaac Cohen*

After seven consecutive months of average monthly creation of 225,000 new jobs, in August there was a disappointing downward turn in the US labor market. Last week, the Labor Department said only 142,000 new jobs were created in August. Still, the unemployment rate fell to 6.1 percent, the lowest level since the 2008-2009 Great Recession, mainly due to less participation in the workforce, which at 62.8 percent was unseen since 1978.

By sectors, professional and commercial services were the most dynamic, with 43,000 new jobs created in health care. By contrast, job losses were registered in retail, while no new jobs were created in manufacturing.

Vigorous job creation, in the previous seven months, was generating the expectation that the central bank would start increasing interest rates sooner, from the current near zero level. However, the weaker August employment figures confirmed the conclusion presented by the Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen, at a recently held conference on labor market dynamics. Chair Yellen recalled the Open Market Committee, last July, said “underutilization of labor market resources still remains significant.” Therefore, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia President Eric Rosengren concluded, in a separate speech, monetary policy can “continue to be patient.”

*International analyst and consultant. Commentator on economic and financial issues for CNN en Español TV and radio. Former Director, UNECLAC.

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About Ramón Jiménez

Ramón Jiménez, actual Managing Editor de MetroLatinoUSA. Periodista que cubre eventos de las comunidades latinas en Washington D.C., Maryland y Virginia. Graduado de la Escuela de Periodismo de la Universidad del Distrito de Columbia. Galardonado en numerosas ocasiones por parte de la Asociación Nacional de Publicaciones Hispanas (NAHP) y otras organizaciones comunitarias y deportivas de la región metropolitana de esta capital. También premiado en dos ocasiones como Mejor Periodista del Año por la cobertura de la comunidad salvadoreña; premios otorgados por la Oficina de Asuntos Latinos del Alcalde de Washington (OLA) y otras organizaciones. Ha sido miembro del jurado calificador en diferentes concursos literarios, de belleza y talento en la región metropolitana. Ha visitado zonas de desastre en Nicaragua, Honduras y El Salvador e invitado a esos países por organizaciones que asisten a personas de escasos recursos económicos. Antes trabajó en otros medios de prensa de Virginia y Washington, D.C., incluyendo reportajes para una agencia noticiosa mundial.

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