Some Facts On The Bush Economy
There’s been a lot of chatter back and forth today about the job numbers that came out, with some of you Bush defenders telling us that the numbers are fine, considering the GDP numbers, consumer confidence numbers, and other indicators. Aside from those observations, I’d like to provide some facts.
Weekly first-time filings for unemployment claims, two-and one-half years into a “recovery”, went up again last week unexpectedly.
Today’s job growth numbers for June were far below those expected by experts, and the results from April and May have been revised downward. Factory orders fell in April and May, again two-and-one-half years into this recovery.
It has now been clearly established that a majority of the jobs created in this recovery are lower-wage jobs, and they are being created at a higher rate than a similar time in the 1993/1994 recovery. A large number of these jobs are temp help, and service sector jobs in health and foodservice industries. The economy continues to under perform in creating manufacturing jobs, again nearly three years into recovery. This development is finally getting the attention of mainstream corporate economists, who now worry that growth in the second half of the year will now be revised downward as a result of the quality of these jobs relative to the jobs they are replacing. If you don’t believe me, then perhaps you’ll believe the chief economist for Wells Fargo Bank, who said exactly these things today and also said that the effects of Bush’s tax cuts have worn off, and the economy is cooling off.
And while wage growth may be lacking the rest of this year relative to costs, corporate profits are the highest they have been in years, although it appears that little of this will be passed along to workers as corporations hoard their cash from the Bush tax cuts to pay dividends and plan acquisitions.
This is the Bush economy that W will be running on this fall. And he can’t blame Clinton for this.
Update: If you don't want to believe me (Part 2), notice that the New York Times editorial page makes the same point in tomorrow's lead editorial.