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Weekly Wrap: American jobs, European economy

Kai Ryssdal Jan 6, 2012

Sudeep Reddy from the Wall Street Journal and Lizzie O’Leary discuss the week on Wall Street and beyond.

On today’s jobs report:

Lizzie O’Leary: If you go back and look at the payroll numbers for the last six months or so, yes, the trend is good, but it goes kind of up, down, down, up, down, up. Now we’re on an up — a bigger up than we’ve seen before — but you’re already talking about those long-term unemployed. That’s still the thing that worries me. Are we in some mass transitional moment of re-shaping the labor market, or how do we get those people back into the workforce?

On whether things will change come Election Day:

Sudeep Reddy: It’s likely that we’re going to have more of the same: Relatively moderate job growth; unemployment that is too high but at least on a slowly improving trend. The problem, though, is the risk of being different, is so larger now given what’s happening in Europe and given what’s happening everywhere else. Our markets are too interconnected that we can really see at any point of the year a big shock that takes us down. These are the kinds of things that neither the Republican candidates nor the White House — they don’t want to discuss this, because politically, there’s no good way to talk about what’s happening in Europe and how it affects the U.S. economy, because it kind of shows how we’ve fallen and how easily we can be taken down by somebody else.

For more analysis, listen to the full audio above.

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