President Obama is in Russia at the G20 summit and started out his press conference by saying how the economy is just doing great. Listening to him made me feel like I had entered Bizarro World. He must not have heard the news that although the official unemployment rate dropped to 7.3%, the labor participation rate plummeted to a level not seen since 1978.
While the Establishment survey data was ugly due to both the miss and the prior downward revisions in the NFP print, the real action was in the Household survey, where we find that the number of people not in the labor force rose by a whopping 516,000 in one month, which in turn increased the total number of people outside the labor force to a record 90.5 million Americans.
The economy added 169,000 jobs in August, while economists expected a rise of 180,000. I wonder how many of those jobs were part time.
Oh, and stocks tumbled due to fears of a war with Syria. The dollar also fell, but oil, copper and gold are up. That won’t be good news at the gas pump.