Real Time Economics - WSJ creation slowed in December but other details pointed to a tightening labor market. The economy added 156,000 jobs last month, while the jobless rate rose slightly to 4.7% as more Americans entered the labor force. Workers’ hourly wages grew 2.9% over the past 12 months, the strongest yearly gain in more than seven years. Here’s how economists and analysts reacted to Friday’s report.
“For the year, the economy averaged job creation of about 180,000 per month—a solid result, but one that represents the slowest pace since 2012. While this is partially reflective of the slowdown in the pace of economic growth, it also reflects a labor market that is increasingly tight. Employers are simply having a harder time filling open positions as the economy nears full employment.“—Jim Baird, Plante Moran Financial Advisors Economists React to the December Jobs Report: ?Very Close to Full Employment? - Real Time Economics - WSJ
If we are at full employment, wages are rising, and the people who have dropped out of the work force still aren't coming back in, does it still make sense to gut our budget with tax cuts for the wealthy to spur job growth, try to balance the trade deficit with tariffs, and spend a trillion dollars in infrastructure spending we will have to borrow when the economy isn't really in need of the boost? I say no. There's a lot of good in Donald Trump's vision. Western universalism is a failed policy. We should start looking out for our own interests first and let go of trying to westernize China, Russia, and Islam. But with Trump's lack of ability to admit when he's wrong and lack of trust in official figures and academic analysis, I don't see how this ends well. It seems like we will have a Fed increasingly trying to counteract ill advised, inflationary moves by Trump.