As many have observed the employment report for August released today was disappointing news, but it really is a continuation of a steady stream of bad employment news that has been the story of this recovery since its beginning. The economy is growing too slowly to increase jobs at a pace that matches the growing population—unlike previous recoveries from deep recessions.
Here is an update of the chart that compares the change in the employment to population ratio in this recovery with the recovery from the deep slump of the early 1980s. This percentage dropped a litttle in August, but the big story is that there has never been a lift off.
Russ Roberts has produced a fascinating a new "chartcast" which illustrates how unusually poor this recovery has been. Through a series of questions and answers he traces through several key charts with me. It is a visual version of his very successful podcast series Econ Talk.
Russ is planning a follow-up chartcast which gets into the causes of the slow recovery.