Tag Archives: The Economy

The 2018 Budget…Will Democrats Blink?…Open Thread for Jan.3, 2018

Within the next few weeks the American Federal Budget for 2018 will have to be worked out….

A failure to do so will force the US Government to stop its non-essential employee’s from coming to work….

While the Republicans passed their tax cut/give away on their own?

That won’t happen with the budget which needs Democratic votes in the Senate…

The BIG question IS?

Will the Democrats dig in against the House Conservative’s reluctance to approve ANYTHING the Democrats want?….What will the Republican Senator do?

And finally?

How far will Senate Democratic Minority Leader Chuck Schumer go to get something for his party to sell in the upcoming Midterm elections?

Republican and Democratic leaders of the House and Senate will meet on Wednesday with White House officials to try to come to terms on a deal to raise strict limits on military and domestic spending before Jan. 19, when the current stopgap spending bill expires.

If negotiations break down, the government could run out of money — just as President Trump marks his first year in office.

Democratic demands are ambitious, topped by a legislative shield for the young undocumented immigrants whose Obama-era protection from deportation was ended by Mr. Trump. They are also pushing for broader intervention in the opioid epidemic, a boost for veterans’ care, disaster relief to hurricane-stricken areas, and financing for the Children’s Health Insurance Program.

“Nothing is agreed to until everything is agreed to,” Representative Nancy Pelosi of California, the Democratic leader, said in an interview on Tuesday….

Shortly before Christmas, the House and Senate agreed on the stopgap spending bill that is keeping the government open through Jan. 19, punting other fights into the new year.

“It never seems to get any easier, right?” Representative Mario Diaz-Balart, Republican of Florida, said at the time. “January’s going to be a bear.”…..


Jobless rate drops to 17 year low of 4.1% last month…But?

In the aftermath of the hurricane’s that came thru the country has knocked  people out of the labor force….

And wages aren’t climbing from employers…

The unemployment figure has fallen sharply this year, from 4.8% in January. But even as the labor market has tightened, wage growth has remained stubbornly subdued.

Average hourly earnings for all private-sector workers dropped a penny in October, to $26.53, after jumping 12 cents in the prior month. Over the last 12 months, average pay for workers has risen just 2.4%.

Last month’s job growth of 261,000 was less than the 310,000 or so that analysts were expecting, but the September payroll change was revised higher — from a loss of 33,000 jobs initially reported to a small gain of 18,000. Job growth for August also was stronger than previously estimated.

Taking the last three months together, employers added on average 162,000 jobs a month. That is down slightly from last year and the first half of this year, but still well above what’s needed to absorb the natural increase in the workforce population….


Tax Cuts or Balanced Budget try?…The Republican dilemma…

Republican President Donald Trump wants a tax cut….The guy who boasted he ‘loves’ debt doesn’t really care about the Conservative ballanced budget/less debt thing….

It isn’t ‘his’ money he talking about , right?

Republican law makers in Congress are trying to flush out a bill that would make their party leader happy and  party regualrs happy to campaign on more money for their  supporters when the run next year in the midterm elections…

But some fiscal conservatives are already grumbling about the stampede to throw out the spending limits they imposed on themselves to stop spending during the terms  of President Obama….

As in healthcare and Iran?

Checks the GOPer’s put in effect to hamper Obama are causing problems for THEMSELVES….

The debate highlights conflicting schools of thought over tax cuts in the party of Reagan, which could have dire consequences, particularly in the narrowly divided Senate.

Republicans say they want less debt but at the same time love a good tax cut — and are desperate to finally notch a major legislative achievement. Most Republicans are coming down on the side of tax cuts, preaching supply-side theories that tax cuts need not be paid for because they will grow the economy and eventually pay for themselves.

“In order to make good on our campaign tax promise, there probably are going to be some sacrifices made from an ideological perspective,” said senior House Budget Committee member Steve Womack (R-Ark.), a longtime deficit hawk.

“I believe that the biggest remedy for our fiscal situation is growth in the economy,” he added. “I am not averse to some deficit spending in order to create long-term sustained growth.”

Most economists say it’s unlikely that a multi-trillion-dollar tax package will pay for itself with sustained, long-term growth. That however hasn’t stopped Republicans from predicting that cutting taxes will increase the GDP by a full percentage point for several years and wash away deficit concerns with new revenue.

The crux of the debate centers on “static” scores from budget-crunchers that do not account for new growth, and “dynamic” scores that predict new revenues will be produced by tax cuts.

In today’s GOP, “dynamic” is in and “static” is out.

“The scoring mechanism, again, is crazy,” said Sen Ron Johnson (R-Wis.). “Just agree we’re going to lose money on a static scoring basis. I’m happy to live with a $2-3 trillion static loss.”

Corker has been the loudest critic of this thinking, warning about a “party-like” atmosphere in the GOP, especially now that Barack Obama is out of the White House. But he’s being joined by others: Sen. Todd Young (R-Ind.) told the Indiana Business Journal that “we can’t assume unreasonable rates of economic growth or we’re being fiscally irresponsible.”

Corker’s group, however, appears to be small party. While Republicans earlier this year set out to rewrite the tax code without blowing a hole in the national budget, most Hill Republicans, from GOP leaders to conservatives have started to side with Mulvaney, acknowledging that they’ll grow the deficit for a time with the tax package….


Hurricane’s cost include 33,000 jobs…

The Labor Department released its official hiring and unemployment figures for September on Friday morning, providing the latest snapshot of the American economy.

The Numbers

■ The economy lost 33,000 jobs last month, the first monthly decline in employment in seven years. Wall Street economists had expected very modest employment gains of 80,000, according to Bloomberg.

 ■ The average hourly wage grew by 0.45 percent, for a year-over-year gain of 2.9 percent.

The Takeaway

The hurricanes that roared through Florida, Texas and neighboring states knocked down September’s national payroll totals. But whatever damage the storms caused, Wall Street analysts do not expect it to significantly undermine the labor market over the long term.

“The numbers were certainly blown around a lot by the storms,” said Carl Tannenbaum, chief economist for Northern Trust. “The interruptions created in the hurricane regions were seen in leisure and hospitality especially, which had a huge decline.”…..


St. Louis’ minimum wage is decreasing by 22%

Another of example of Republican’s TAKING from the poor to give to the Rich….

St. Louis will DROP it’s minimum wage from $10.00 amour to $7.80….

…by  Christopher Matthews @ AXIOS

Correction: An earlier version of this post mistakenly stated that the minimum wage is set to decline by 17%, rather than 22%.

Minimum wages are generally marching higher in states and cities across the U.S., but the wage floor in St. Louis is set to fall from $10 to $7.80 later this summer. That’s after a Republican-controlled state legislature voted to make illegal a city-wide minimum wage law that went into effect 10 weeks ago.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch chats with employers in the city, most of whom say they will cut the pay of workers they had raised just 10 weeks before. But some, even those who opposed the higher minimum initially, can’t bring themselves to do it.

Why it’s unusual: Few ideas poll better than raising the minimum wage, and the issue has had particular success in state and city legislatures and the voting booth in recent years. Watch to see if Missouri is the movement’s high-water market…..


Trump or Not?…The US Economy is up slightly

The Hill does a story that should make Trump & Co. Happy….

The economy is emerging as a bright spot for President Trump as he struggles to move his congressional agenda amid a series of controversies.

The S&P 500 is up more than 12 percent since Election Day, unemployment has reached a 16-year low and economic growth in the coming year is expected to reach 2.3 percent, more robust growth than the 1.6 percent it grew in 2016.

Trump sought to play up his handling of the economy again on Friday at an event to end a week meant to highlight his efforts on legislation to fund new infrastructure projects across the country.

“We are here to think big, to act boldly, and to rise above the petty partisan squabbling of Washington, D.C. We are here to take action. It’s time to start building in our country, with American workers and with American iron and aluminum and steel,” Trump said in a speech at the Department of Transportation.

Trump has often gotten in his own way when it comes to publicizing his handling of the economy.

This was supposed to be the administration’s “infrastructure week,” but it was almost entirely overshadowed by the appearance by fired FBI Director James Comey at the Senate Intelligence Committee….


U.S. payroll gains slowed in March…Jobless rate @ 4.5%

The Jobless rate is the lowest since 2007….

Wages have slowed in rising….

While the payroll figures are the weakest since last May and represent a pullback from the first two months of the year, it may reflect that things are getting back to normal. Employment has been on a healthy run, giving Federal Reserve policy makers enough confidence to raise interest rates in March and forecast two more hikes this year. Businesses have been challenged by a dwindling pool of unemployed, and are gradually giving in to pressures to raise wages in order to attract and retain talent.

“Even if payrolls are slowing down, I’m not sure that that means the labor market is weakening,” said Stephen Stanley, chief economist at Amherst Pierpont Securities LLC. “To the extent that it is slowing down or going to slow down, it’s probably more a function of tight supply than weakening demand.”…


Wages stagnate for some in the middle class…

More and more people have to work several jobs , or have both people in a couple work to keep up…..

This HAS to be one of the reasons some of 2008/2012 Obama voters switched to Donald Trump feeling they where falling behind

Barely half of 30-year-olds earn more than their parents did at a similar age, a research team found, an enormous decline from the early 1970s when the incomes of nearly all offspring outpaced their parents. Even rapid economic growth won’t do much to reverse the trend.

Economists and sociologists from Stanford, Harvard and the University of California set out to measure the strength of what they define as the American Dream, and found the dream was fading. They identified the income of 30-year-olds starting in 1970, using tax and census data, and compared it with the earnings of their parents when they were about the same age.

In 1970, 92% of American 30-year-olds earned more than their parents did at a similar age, they found. In 2014, that number fell to 51%.

“My parents thought that one thing about America is that their kids could do better than they were able to do,” said Raj Chetty, a prominent Stanford University economist who emigrated from India at age 9 and is part of the research team. “That was important in my parents’ decision to come here.”…


Jobless rate drops to 4.6%…..But?

President Obama is gonna leave office with a nice low jobless rate….

THAT should have assured Hillary Clinton a win….

It did NOT…..

Despite the OVERALL low number?

There are large pockets of places in America where the above number is meaningless…

THAT is why Hillary Clinton isn’t going to the White House and Donald Trump is out crowing about saving jobs from going overssea’s (And NOT mentioning the job cuts at the same company)…

The U.S. economy added 178,000 jobs in November, and the unemployment rate fell to 4.6 percent from 4.9 percent the previous month, according to new government data released Friday morning. The first employment report since voters went to the polls last month shows an economy in strong shape as President-elect Donald Trump prepares to take office.

The unemployment rate fell to levels not seen since August 2007, before a bubble in the U.S. housing market began to burst. The fall was driven partly by the creation of new jobs and partly by people retiring and otherwise leaving the labor force.

“Overall, it’s a labor market that is continuing to improve, that has a decent momentum,” said Josh Feinman, chief global economist at Deutsche Asset Management. “So that’s certainly encouraging.”

While Trump boasted of the jobs saved in Indiana, the challenge going forward is that the economy continues to shed manufacturing jobs, said Jed Kolko, chief economist at job search site Indeed. The latest report showed manufacturing jobs down from both the previous month and November 2015.

“To bring back manufacturing jobs means overcoming some pretty strong headwinds,” said Kolko.

The November jobs report was also one of the final snapshots of the economy under President Obama’s administration….



Equitable Growth ‏@equitablegrowth
Unemployment also varies quite a bit by education level. Rate for college grads 1/2 of HS grad rate.

Why Obama did NOT help Hillary Clinton for Some people….

The Economy….



This is largely about people moving from the “Obama helped” column to the “Obama made no difference” column, but it’s somewhat telling when it comes to comparing his personal popularity to the results of the 2016 election. Trump’s win wasn’t a large-scale rebuke of Obama’s policies — Clinton won the popular vote, after all — but it did reflect lingering uneasiness with the direction in which our country’s political leaders have taken us. The status quo was largely fine, and Obama is an affable and likable politician whose personal appeal has persisted even as his policies have come under fire in recent years.

But stagnation loomed in Americans’ views of their personal situations. And that helps explain why the economically struggling Rust Belt delivered Trump the presidency.

As I’ve written before, there were plenty of people who liked Obama just fine but voted for Trump in the 2016 election — 17 percent of Trump’s base of support, in fact, according to a poll from The Washington Post and the Schar School of Policy and Government at George Mason University. Many of these voters appeared to be at least somewhat loyal to the Republican Party but thought Obama was a fine president.

On Election Day, they pulled the lever for Trump. And at least part of the reason appears to be that they didn’t see the economic recovery in their own lives. So why not try something different — or even very different?


Last Jobs report befor the election is a Good one….

The Jobs reports continue to be upbeat….

U.S. employers added 161,000 jobs in October and the unemployment rate fell to 4.9 percent as the labor market maintains steady improvement.

The Labor Department’s report, which was below economists’ expectations, is the last one before Election Day, giving Democrat Hillary Clinton and Republican Donald Trump a final chance to make their cases on how the economy would run under their watch.

Jobs growth was revised up by 44,000 for the previous two months. In August, jobs went up to 176,000 from a previous estimate of 167,000, and September got a boost to 191,000 from 156,000.

Payrolls have grown on average by a healthy 176,000 over the past three months.

In the past year, hourly earnings have risen by 2.8 percent, the fastest since June 2009.

But how much this report influences the presidential election, which is only four days away and has already seen 34 million people cast their ballots, is difficult to gauge….


American’s seem alright with the way the economy is now….

That’s the view from Five Thirty Eight….

They say that while the Media may be echoing Donald Trump’s negativity about things?

American’s on the whole…..Are NOT….

Bill Fox sells cars, including all-American Chevrolets and Ram trucks, in an upstate New York town whose congressman lost re-election in 2014 by 20 points — the kind of place where, according to the usual media narrative, voters are angry about the loss of blue-collar jobs and worried about the economy. But like other car dealers, Fox is seeing near-record sales: Somehow, he said, consumers don’t seem as worried about the economy as the pundits say they are.

“We’re not seeing [anger] at all,” said Fox, a partner in Auburn-based Fox Dealerships. “The way I account for it is, the public sees economic indicators that are OK, their job’s not threatened, and they may be afraid of the future, but the monthly [car] payment is good.”

That kind of optimism might be surprising in a year when Donald Trump, at least according to one dominant media narrative, rode a wave of economic anxiety to the Republican presidential nomination and when voters routinely cite the economy as a top concern. In a recent NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll, for example, 48 percent of voters said the country is “losing ground” on economic issues, compared with 45 percent who said it is “making progress.”1 In a recent YouGov poll, 40 percent of respondents said the economy was getting worse, versus 21 percent who said it was getting better. A weekly Gallup survey that asked the same question found that 37 percent think the economy is getting better and 58 percent think it is getting worse. (Gallup’s survey, unlike YouGov’s, didn’t offer “about the same” as an option.) Seventy-two percent of voters say the U.S. is on the wrong track, according to a separate poll from Gallup, which hasn’t found a majority satisfied with the “way things are going in the United States” since George W. Bush’s first term.

Yet even as Americans tell political pollsters that they are worried about the economy, they tell a different story in a separate set of surveys that are used by economists and investors to forecast consumer spending behavior…..