Will U.S. jobs numbers continue to improve?

Josh Brown Mar 7, 2012

Jeremy Hobson: Here are some other numbers for you from Super Tuesday: six states won by Mitt Romney; three states won by Rick Santorum; one state won by Newt Gingrich. And the number one issue for voters in state after state yesterday? The economy.

Here’s political scientist Larry Sabato from the University of Virginia.

Larry Sabato: The economy is foremost; it has been virtually from the beginning. But what’s interesting is, in a year when most Americans are most interested in the economy, it doesn’t seem to be enough to carry a candidate to the Republican nomination.

So the Republican race goes on. Well if the number one issue for voters was the economy, let’s talk about the economy — jobs to be specific. The payroll processing company ADP said this morning that the private sector added 216,000 jobs last month, that beat expectations.

For more on this, let’s bring in Josh Brown of Fusion Analytics who is with us live from New York. Hi Josh.

Josh Brown: Good morning.

Hobson: So, what do you think of this? Another good month for job creation…

Brown: Well, this is not the official number — keep in mind this is private payrolls from ADP, which typically aligns, but it’s not perfect. But yeah, I mean, there’s nothing really not to like here; 216,000 jobs, which is basically in line. And within that number, you saw small businesses hiring, which is really important. Small businesses are a big source of new jobs in America.

Hobson: And of course, as you mention, we’re waiting for the big Labor Department report on Friday for the month of February. What about the people who are being left behind, Josh, who are not getting jobs right now?

Brown: You know, it’s tough and it’s actually pretty industry specific. And I hate to sound callous, and certainly Wall Street is seeing its share of layoffs as well, but if after five years, you consider yourself as being “left behind,” at a certain point, it’s not just the economy, it’s a little bit you. So I think there are regions in the country that are doing better; there are certain industries versus others that are doing better; and at a certain point, you really have to reinvent yourself.

Hobson: But Josh, I mean, some people will hear that and say: wait a minute, I can’t move for a job — my house is underwater, I’ve got a family, what am I supposed to do?

Brown: Nobody said this was easy. One of the problems with a post-credit crisis balance sheet recession type scenario is that you’ve got this huge overhang of debt everywhere; people aren’t hiring. We don’t get that same snap back that you get from a regular recession.

So again, nobody said this was easy, but unfortunately, sometimes that’s just what the economy throws you. Some people are adapt and some don’t. You know, I hate to sound callous, but at a certain point, you’ve got to really wake up and say: these jobs may not be coming back.

Hobson: Josh Brown of Fusion Analytics, thanks so much.

Brown: Thank you very much.

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