Friday, April 4, 2008

I'm Too Cool For The Room - Jobless Is The New Black!

I lost my job on the last day of February, but guess what... Joblessness didn't hit a new 2.5 year high until March... Which means once again, John Matthews is ahead of the curve!

From Reuters(a possible, if unlikely, future employer of mine):

Employers cut payrolls for a third consecutive month in March and the jobless rate jumped to a 2-1/2 year high, adding more evidence that a housing downturn and credit crisis may have pushed the economy into recession.

It was the first time the U.S. economy shed jobs for three straight months since a five-month string in 2003, when the economy was mired in a jobless recovery from the 2001 recession.

Adding to the bleak picture, the department said a combined 152,000 jobs were lost in January and February, compared with a previous estimate of 85,000. The unemployment rate jumped to 5.1 percent from 4.8 percent, the highest since September 2005.

"There doesn't appear to be any silver lining. It shows that we're right in the middle of a recession," said Carl Lantz, U.S. interest rate strategist at Credit Suisse in New York. "Our expectation is that it will be a longer recession than the last two, and we're just in the beginning."

The White House said it was "not happy" with the jobs report, saying it expected growth to be flat in the first quarter, but pick up later in the year.

On a happier note, I spent some of my jobless time today replacing most of the old incandescent light bulbs in my house with those new model florescent jobs. I may be a bit late to the conversion, but we had tried "green" bulbs once before - buying up a schissel of them at IKEA about four years ago - and those earlier models just didn't shine bright enough for us. Today's models work just fine, though... and they save a ton of electricity. I wish I could tell you I am being a good earthling doing my part for Al Gore and the environment, but I'm not. I'm being cheap!

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