Back from the Brink?

Carol Platt Liebau

8/5/2011 9:38:39 AM - Carol Platt Liebau
Modest good news: Non-farm payrolls are up by 117,000, better than the 85,000 expected, and the unemployment rate has dipped to 9.1% from 9.2% (mostly as a result of discouraged workers leaving the job hunt).

Of course, before The White Houe gets too jubilant or Harry Reid takes to the Senate floor, it's worth pointing out that 117,000 is less than half of the 255,000 new jobs the economy would have to be churning out each month for the unemployment rate to drop to 8.5% by election day.  And what's more, though Ronald Reagan was reelected with 7.4% unemployment, there -- unlike here -- there was strong evidence the numbers were moving in the right direction.

Right now, all this does is pull the US back from the brink and offer some modest hope that we are not headed into a new recession.