Each monday, I will be posting key facts from the previous week that shape thinking, policy, and the news.
With the most recent jobs data released last week, jobs stats are driving markets, economics, and politics.
1. The nation added a total of 103,000 jobs in September, with private payrolls rising 137,000 but public sector jobs falling 34,000. The August jobs number was readjusted to 57,000 new jobs, up from the original zero. At least 125,000 jobs must be created every month simply to keep up with the growing US population.
2. Job creation did not keep pace with US population growth from 2001 to 2007. Massive job losses took place in the second half of 2008 and did not stop until January, 2010. From January, 2010 to September 2011, the US has created more total jobs every month, but public sector jobs fell shaply and total jobs created often did not keep up with the number needed to keep pace with population growth.
Occupy Wall Street protests spread across the nation last week. What is fueling the protests? Many things, including:
3. Median income for American families fell 7% in real terms since 1999.
4. Fourteen million Americans are unemployed, with 6.5 million unemployed for more than 6 months. Approximately 2 million have given up looking for work and are not counted among the officially unemployed.
5. One out of 4 children in the USA live in poverty.
6. The Eagles are 1-4; the Phillies on vacation; PSU 5-1; and the Steelers remain Pennsylvania's championship hope.