While it is good news that the economy continues to grow, the numbers “under the hood” of the latest jobs report are not that great.
The broad measures of unemployment, including those discouraged from seeking work, nudged down only slightly, although the official unemployment rate at 7.7 percent is the lowest since 2008.
Republican economist Douglas Holtz-Eakin called it a jobs report that is helpful but not promising.
“The good news is that the economy continues to be resilient despite head winds that include the fiscal cliff,” he said, referring to the threat of higher taxes and automatic budget cuts if Congress does not act on a budget deal by the end of the year.
“The bad news is that at best it reflects only growth at the rate of diminished expectations — not enough to provide strong hope to the millions who remain out of work,” Holtz-Eakin added.
The problem of long-term unemployment remains. This is the kind of report that suggests growth will be too slow for comfort for a while.