Tag Archive | "labor department"

Fed Perceives Better Job Conditions Across U.S.

The stunted labor market in the United States may be heading up, according to a report coming from the Federal Reserve that found moderately better job conditions throughout the country.

The Fed’s Beige Book was based on the anecdotal reports that the central bank has gathered from its business contacts in the regional branches and showed an increasingly bright, yet guarded picture.

The results matched with the recent increase in the U.S economic data that impelled some economists to raise their growth forecasts in the first half of this year.

The Fed said that all district reports indicated that employment levels are increasing in at least some areas, usually by moderate amounts. Manufacturing also emerged to be doing well. However, many businesses are still in a wary while U.S housing sector is still left in a rut.

Meanwhile, the latest data showed modestly better outlook on U.S home mortgages as lending rates were relieved from recent highs. The seasonally adjusted index of mortgage application activity rose 2.2 percent last week, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association. The figures went up its highest level in just one month.

The report by Fed also forecasted an increase in price pressures for businesses. However, there is little evidence that this will be passed on to consumers. The findings reflected the data on import prices that jumped 1.1 percent in December after a revised 1.5 percent increase in November.

According to the Labor Department, prices were up 4.8 percent last year. A low inflation environment in the country has permitted the Federal Reserve to maintain a very loose monetary policy. However, the recent increase in global energy and commodity prices has lifted some concern regarding cost pressures.

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Disappointing Job Growth Continues Amid Decreasing Jobless Rate

The number of workers hired in the last month of the 2010 was notably lesser than expected amid the surprising fall in the unemployment rate to its lowest record for nearly two years.

The decline in the jobless rate was due to the fact that people are giving up their search for work. The unappealing jobs growth figure was reported by the Labor Department on Friday.

These figures suggest that the Federal Reserve will likely stay the course, along with its efforts to support the biggest economy in the world by purchasing $600 billion government bonds.

A survey done by the Labor Department among non-farm employers showed that payrolls increased 103,000 last month, which is below the economists’ expectation of 175,000. Also, hiring from private institutions rose 113,000, but government employment declined to 10,000.

These results suggest the idea that the economy is in for a long and slow jobless recovery. Brian Dolan, the chief strategist at Forex.com said that Fed cannot just surrender, not unless the unemployment rate is below 9 percent.

On the brighter side, the overall employment for the months of October and November was modified to reveal 70,000 more job gains than what was previously reported.

Even though the labor market shows signs of slow recovery, the larger economy, on the other hand, shows signs of strengthening, particularly on consumer spending and manufacturing improving. The central bank chief said to the Senate Budget Committee that they have seen an increased evidence of self-sustaining recovery in consumer and business spending.

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