Friday, January 8, 2010
Today, the Labor Department reported that nonfarm payrolls (jobs) decreased by 85,000 in December while the data for November was revised upward and now shows a gain of 4,000 jobs. For some perspective, today's chart illustrates the percent increase in the number of jobs for every decade since the 1940s (the data goes back to 1939). As the chart illustrates, the number of jobs at the end of a decade has been anywhere from 20% to 38% greater than 10 years prior. That 20% plus growth has been the case until the decade just passed during which the number of jobs basically ended the year where it began. This subpar job growth is particularly noteworthy because the US population increased by 10% during the time frame.