Open Chat... All Day, Every Day! Express Your Views, Debate, and Challenge the Views of Others!

In order to keep up with the nature of free, spirited debate, I wanted to place the chat feature at the top of the homepage. This ensures people can come here and share their views on anything they wish and not have it be related to any specific discussion. Here, people can share ideas, links, and views "unmoderated" and an their own pace. To me, this makes The Elephant in the Room blog truly a place for debate.

Friday, May 3, 2013

The April 2013 Jobs Report

Here is the April 2013 employment situation report from the BLS:

Key Highlights:

- The unemployment rate dropped to 7.5%. Non-farm employers added 165,000 new jobs, beating analysts' predictions.

- The number of unemployed persons remained unchanged at 11.7 million in April.

- The civilian labor force participation rate remained unchanged at 63.3%. In spite of the better-than-expected jobs numbers, this figure is concerning.

- The "not in labor force" count (those who have no job and have stopped looking for work) decrease modestly from 89,967,000 in March to 89,936,000.

- The number of persons employed for part-time economic reasons (those that are considered part-time involuntary workers) increased by 278,000 to 7,900,000.

- Average hourly earnings rose by 4 cent. The 12-month average for hourly earnings have risen at a 1.9% yearly rate.

The good:

The unemployment rate fell and 165,000 jobs were added, beating analysts' predictions. This is the first time in a while that a decrease in the unemployment rate was not a result of people giving up looking for work and leaving the labor force. Additionally, February's and March's numbers were revised upward to 332,000 and 138,000, respectively. These are good signs.

The bad:

The labor force participation rate remains high. This number needs to increase... it's just that simple. Also, the  part-time labor force increased, and that's undesirable. The economy needs to add full-time jobs, not part-time ones, or ones that people are taking simply because they can't find work elsewhere. This, coupled with the decrease in work hours, could be a sign that employers of low-wage workers are making shifts in hiring and employee retention with the upcoming health care bill kicking in full swing next year. Additionally, the economy needs to add 150,000 jobs per month to simply keep up with population growth. While 165,000 beats that number, it's not enough to consider this an expansion. This is slow job growth. It's mediocre or bare minimum at best. We might not be slipping into another recession, but we surely not pulling out of one quickly.

The ugly:

My prediction might seem redundant, but the press will champion this. Get ready for the tidal wave of fawning coming from the press claiming how wonderful it is. Live I've said, the numbers are decent... they certainly aren't terrible, but they're nothing to write home about, either.

What do YOU think? Please share your thoughts below.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Listen to OpinioNation LIVE at 10:00PM EST Tonight!

We start May off strong with a great, and maybe controversial, discussion about rights. I'm going to be sharing my views that our rights, our American rights, are really privileges, and that the notion of "human rights" isn't real but yet a political tool used to sway minds and push legislation.

Be sure to join us at 10:00pm EST! Listen to me (Mike - LME), AmyBruceand host, Jon Rollingsas we discuss all the major news headlines of the week. Click the image to listen in:

(the Live365 radio panel will be on the right - it says "Live Stream Players")

 This is a great opportunity for you to share your thoughts. I'm sure there will be some disagreement on the subject matter of this show. Be sure to express your views live! Call us at 877-297-8022, and you'll promptly be put on the air. Engage the panel, share your views, or ask a question to our listeners. We hope to hear from you.

 Finally, be sure to stick around for our final, lightning-round segment The Bottom Line.

P.S. Speaking of rights, be sure to vote in our gay marriage poll on the left side of the blog!