U.S. Congressman Kevin Brady of Texas, the Vice Chairman of the Joint Economic Committee, made the following statement based upon today’s release of the Employment Situation Report for August 2015 by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), which reported an increase of 173,000 non farm payroll jobs (140,000 in the private sector) and that the unemployment rate fell to 5.1%:
“America is looking for a strong sustained recovery, so from that standpoint the jobs numbers are just lousy, especially the slower growth in Main Street jobs. The disappointing reality is that the Obama recovery’s private-sector jobs gap got bigger – again. President Obama needs to step up to the plate and work with Republicans in Congress to kick our economy into high gear.”
- Private-sector Jobs Gap. Compared with the average of other post-1960 recoveries lasting longer than one year, the private sector jobs gap increased to 5,798,000 from 5,772,000. Compared with the Reagan recovery of the 1980s, the gap increased to 12,765,000 from 12,577,000.
- Closing the Gap. Eliminating the Obama recovery’s private-sector jobs gap with the average of other post-1960 recoveries by the end of 2016 would require the addition of 487,000 private sector jobs in each of the next 16 months. Closing the gap compared with the Reagan recovery would require the addition of 970,000 private sector jobs in each of the next 16 months.
- At This Pace. Private-sector job gains have averaged 190,000 over the past six months. At that pace the private-sector jobs gap compared with the average of other post-1960 recoveries would be reduced by 18 percent (1,043,000) to 4,755,000 by the end of 2016.
- Labor Force Participation Rate. The labor force participation rate remained unchanged at 62.6 percent. The labor force participation rate was 66.0 percent when the recession began in December 2007 and 65.7 percent when the recession ended in June 2009.
- Employment-to-Population Ratio. The employment-to-population ratio increased to 59.4 but remains significantly below its December 2007 level of 62.7 percent when the recession began.