Saturday, January 9, 2010

Employers unexpectedly cut jobs in December

They just can't catch a break, can they? Everything they're doing is designed to destroy job growth, and then when the scheme actually works, month after month, they're confounded.

    Reuters -

    U.S. employers cut 85,000 jobs in December, confounding expectations the labor market was finally stabilizing and piling pressure on President Barack Obama to spur job growth.

    The jobless rate held steady at 10 percent, the Labor Department said on Friday, but it would have marched higher if a surprisingly large number of discouraged jobseekers had not left the labor force.

    November payrolls were revised to show the economy actually added 4,000 jobs rather than losing 11,000, as initially reported, breaking a streak of 22 consecutive monthly losses. With revisions to October, however, the economy lost 1,000 more jobs than previously estimated over those two months.

    Unemployment remains the Achilles heel of the economy's recovery from its worst recession in 70 years, with job creation critical to sustaining the recovery when government stimulus fades.

    "The jobs numbers ... are a reminder that the road to recovery is never straight. What this underscores, though, is that we have to continue to explore every avenue to accelerate the return to hiring," Obama said, announcing new investments in clean energy.

    Economists had expected a flat reading for payrolls, with the unemployment rate ticking up to 10.1 percent