Survey says employment trending up


ChartThe Conference Board tracks weight separate economic indicators to get a feel for the direction of employment in the United States – and this month, seven of them are pointing in the right direction. The numbers show improvement both February 2012 over January 2012, and even greater improvement February 2012 over February 2011.

The Conference Board Employment Trends Index stands at 107.46, a 1.38% increase over January 2012 and a 6.1% increase over February 2011.

“The acceleration in the ETI suggests that rapid job growth is likely to continue in the next several months, despite modest improvements in Demand and Production,” said Gad Levanon, Director of Macroeconomic Research at The Conference Board. “In the past year output per hour of work grew very slowly. If this trend continues, employment growth could remain robust even if GDP continues to grow at a modest 2 to 2.5 percent, as we expect.”

* 1) Percentage of Respondents Who Say They Find “Jobs Hard to Get” (The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Survey)

* 2) Initial Claims for Unemployment Insurance (U.S. Department of Labor)

* 3) Percentage of Firms With Positions Not Able to Fill Right Now (National Federation of Independent Business Research Foundation)

* 4) Number of Employees Hired by the Temporary-Help Industry (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)

* 5) Part-Time Workers for Economic Reasons (BLS)

* 6) Job Openings (BLS)
* 7) Industrial Production (Federal Reserve Board)

* 8) Real Manufacturing and Trade Sales (U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis)

The only one of the seven that came in negative was #2 Percentage of Firms With Positions Not Able to Fill Right Now.

RBR-TVBR observation: Any improvement in the employment situation spills over beneficially into the economy as a whole. The newly-employed stop being a drain on the economy, eliminating a negative tug – and even better, they begin to consume again, creating demand and causing even more people to be hired, renewing the virtuous circle.