Gold and What Moves it.
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Gold and What Moves it.
Tracking all things that relate to and affect the price of gold.
Curated by Hal
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Where Are the Jobs? | Miguel Perez-Santalla |

by Miguel Perez-Santalla

In the absence of real jobs growth, monetary largesse is set to continue...


Last week's unemployment figure for the US showed an uptick to 7.9% - not a significant change.


This was offset by revisions of job growth in November and December of 2012 that equaled nearly 250,000 jobs.


It is a very positive sign of course, but wait one moment. The participation rate was adjusted again for that same time period. And by taking a quick glance at the participation rate, it would indicate a number greater than those who just started working, stopped looking for work.


So is this really growth? Not so clearly. I think we are seeing stability with a trend to grow, perhaps. But the rosy picture painted by most talking heads last week shows conviction in quite a different story.


Of course we also have ...

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Charles Hugh Smith: Why Employment Is Dead in the Water

Charles Hugh Smith: Why Employment Is Dead in the Water | Gold and What Moves it. |

Employment is dead in the water because opportunities for organic expansion are few and the cost basis of doing business in the U.S. keeps rising.

Let's start by reviewing the basics of employment in the U.S. Courtesy of the St. Louis Federal Reserve, here is the non-institutional civilian population of the U.S. (Note that the Civilian Non-institutional Population With No Disability, 16 years and over (LNU00074593)--roughly speaking, the workforce of the nation-- is 215 million).
Here is the percentage of the population with some kind of job: note this could be self-employment that earns $1,000 a year or a job with 4 hours a week; recall that 38 million American workers earn less than $10,000 per year, 50 million earn less that $15,000 a year and 61 million earn less than $20,000 annually. All these numbers are drawn directly from Social Security Administration payroll data. ...
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January Jobs Data Will Disappoint; Fed to Keep Monetizing Debt | Michael Pento |

January Jobs Data Will Disappoint; Fed to Keep Monetizing Debt | Michael Pento | | Gold and What Moves it. |

by Michael Pento:


The recent spate of better data on initial jobless claims has caused bond yields to rise, stock prices to rally and gold shares to tumble in the last few days. For the 6th time since 2010, an oasis of improving economic data (that has proven to be ephemeral each time in the past) is once again giving investors the false signal of a robust and sustainable recovery. This has in turn caused investors to once again wonder when the Fed would finally stop buying assets from banks and raise interest rates, which have been at zero percent for over four years.


But the data on initial claims has been distorted by seasonal adjustments at the Labor Department. On an adjusted basis, initial jobless claims for the week ending January 19th dropped to 335k, which was the lowest level since January 2008. However, the raw data offers a different take on the labor condition. The unadjusted claims totaled 436,766 in the week ending January 19. That was 20k HIGHER than the 416k claims reported in the comparable week of 2012. The question is, how can initial claims be higher this year than the same week as last year; yet at the same time register the lowest level in 5 years?


Other data on the jobs front confirms the view that the labor market is not improving substantially whatsoever. From the January Empire State Manufacturing Report released last week: "Labor market conditions remained weak, with the indexes for both the number of employees and the average workweek remaining below zero for a fourth month in a row."


And then there is this from the Philly Fed's Manufacturing Survey: "Labor market conditions at reporting firms deteriorated this month. The employment index, at -5.2, fell from -0.2 in December. The percentage of firms reporting decreases in employment (16 percent) exceeded the percentage reporting increases (11 percent). Firms also indicated a decrease in the average workweek compared with last month."


Don't expect a NFP number that is much better than the 150k anticipated by the market. In fact, the odds are better for a significant miss to the downside. ...

Jon Smith's curator insight, March 23, 2013 12:45 PM

There has been better data on initial jobless claims lately. This is not however neccesarily a good thing. The reason is that investors get the false sign from this that the economy is booming. Information has been distorted by the Labor Department. Things are not significantly improving as other data has shown. My opinion is that graphs, data and statistics can be extremely beneficial but should always be looked at with caution. Raw data does not show reasons why and is not a full representation of conditions. I would suggest things such as interviewing random people in the community and ask them how the jobless rate is based on the people they know and its effects on them.