Sunday, September 18, 2022

Labor Line

March 2023___________________________________ 

Labor line has job news and commentary with a one stop short cut for America’s job markets and job related data including the latest data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. 

 This month's job and employment summary data are below. This month's inflation data is below

 The Establishment Job Report and Establishment Job Details for data released March 10, 2023. American Job Market The Chronicle 

 Current Job and Employment Data 


Total Non-Farm Establishment Jobs up 311,000 to 155,350,000

Total Private Jobs up 265,000 to 132,855,000

Total Government Employment up 46,000 to 22,495,000 Note 

Civilian Non-Institutional Population up 150,000 to 266,112,000

Civilian Labor Force up 419,000 to 166,251,000

Employed up 177,000 to 160,315,000

Employed Men up 80,000 to 85,266,000

Employed Women up 97,000 to 75,049,000

Unemployed up 242,000 to 5,936,000

Not in the Labor Force down 269,000 to 99,861,000

Unemployment Rate increased by .2% to 3.6% or 5,936/166,315

Labor Force Participation Rate increased by .1% to 62.5%, or 166,315/266,112

Prices and inflation measured by the Consumer Price Index (CPI) for all Urban Consumers was up by a monthly average of 8.0 percent for 2022. 

The CPI February report for the 12 months ending with February shows the 

CPI for All Items was up 6.4% 

CPI for Food and Beverages was up 9.9% 

CPI for Housing was up 8.2% 

CPI for Apparel was up 3.1% 

CPI for Transportation including gasoline was up 3.8% 

CPI for Medical Care was up 3.1% 

CPI for Recreation was up 4.8% 

CPI for Education was up 3.4% 

CPI for Communication was down .7% 

This Month’s Establishment Jobs Press Report


The Bureau of Labor Statistics published its March report for jobs in February. The labor force increased 419 thousand as a result of normal population growth and 269 thousand returning to the labor force looking for work. Only 177 thousand found employment while the unemployed increased 242 thousand. The increase in the unemployed was big enough to dominate the increase in the labor force resulting in an increase in the unemployment rate by .2 percent to 3.6 percent. The participation rate was up this month by .1 percent, still a low amount of 62.5 percent.

The seasonally adjusted total of establishment employment was up 311 thousand for February. The increase was 245 thousand more jobs in the private service sector combined with a 20 thousand increase in jobs from goods production. The total of 265 thousand jobs gained in the private sector combined with a(n) increase of 46 thousand government service jobs accounts for the total increase.

Goods production jobs were up 20 thousand less than half of last month’s increase.  Natural resources held at 631 thousand jobs; construction was up 24 thousand jobs. Specialty trade contractors had most of the job gains: 13.4 thousand. Heavy and engineering construction added 7.7 thousand more. Manufacturing dropped 4 thousand jobs with no change in durable goods although small gains in computer manufacturing offset with other manufacturing job losses. Nondurable goods lost 4 thousand jobs with a loss of 4.7 thousand jobs in plastic and rubber products manufacturing along with small gains and losses in other subsectors.

Government service employment increased 46 thousand jobs, less than last month but still a large gain for government. The federal government was up 7 thousand jobs; state government up only 2.5 thousand jobs while local government added another 37.1 thousand. Jobs in state education were down 4.3 thousand offset by 6.8 thousand new jobs in state government, excluding education. Local government excluding education added 14 thousand jobs while public education added 23.1 thousand more. Jobs in private sector education were up 11.4 thousand with a combined education increase of 30.2 thousand for a jobs.

Leisure and hospitality took first place this month for private service sector job gains with 105 thousand jobs, less than last month. Arts entertainment and recreation had 21.4 thousand more jobs, up from last month. The sub sector amusements, gambling and recreation had 12.9 thousand of the jobs. Restaurants had 69.9 thousand new jobs, down from last month. Accommodations added 14.4 thousand more jobs about the same as last month. Leisure and hospitality at 16.535 million jobs lingers 485 thousand jobs less than its maximum employment which came February 2020.

Health care had a reasonably good month for jobs adding 63 thousand new jobs, a little less than last month. All four of the health subsectors had more jobs again this month. Ambulatory care added 11.1 thousand jobs; hospitals added a large increase of 19.4 thousand jobs; nursing and residential care added 13.7 thousand new jobs. Social assistance services had a good month with 18.6 thousand new jobs. The growth rate for health care this month dropped from last month but still at 3.58 percent well above the average of 1.85 percent per month of the last several years.

Professional and business services took third place this month for private service sector job gains with 45 thousand jobs, less than last month. The professional and technical services sub sector had 19.5 thousand more jobs while management of companies had only a small increase of 1.1 thousand jobs. Administrative and support services including waste management added 24 thousand new jobs. Professional and technical services job gains came in management and technical consulting services with 11.9 thousand new jobs; architecture and engineering services had modest job gains of 4.6 thousand. Computing had an off month for jobs again this month with a small job loss. Most of the administrative and support services were in employment services with 10.9 thousand of the jobs and services to buildings or dwellings added 10.3 thousand more with other small gains and losses.  

Trade transportation and utilities had 38 thousand new jobs, a modest increase. Both wholesale and retail trade had moderate job gains: wholesale up 11.1 thousand new jobs with retail up 50.1 thousand more. The transportation sub sector had a net loss of 21.5 thousand jobs with the biggest of the job loss in truck transportation down 8.5 thousand jobs; warehousing and storage were down 5.5 thousand jobs; support activities in transportation down 4 thousand more. Utility employment was off 1.1 thousand jobs.

Information services lost 25 thousand jobs this month after job losses last month as well. Job losses came across all sub sectors, especially motion picture and sound recordings down 8.9 thousand jobs. Financial Activities lost a net 1 thousand jobs. Finance and Insurance lost 10.2 thousand jobs while real estate and rental and leasing services added 9.4 thousand jobs. Real estate added 3.9 thousand jobs and rental and leasing services 5.4 thousand more. The category, other, added 9 thousand jobs with 4.2 thousand job gains in repair and maintenance services. Non-profit membership associations picked up 5.0 thousand jobs with small job losses in personal and laundry services,

The economy added 311 thousand jobs, less than last month but above the previous four months. The total for establishment employment in February 2023 is 155.350 million generating an annual growth rate of 2.41 percent. Three sectors lost jobs: manufacturing, information and financial services. Leisure and hospitality did well again. Health care was down from last month but still a good month. This month’s job total is 4.340 million above February a year ago and 11.623 million jobs above February two years ago. Remember though that low wages are an aide to job growth.


February Details 

Non Farm Total +311

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported Non-Farm employment for establishments increased from January by 311 thousand jobs for a(n) February total of 155.350 million. (Note 1 below) An increase of 311 thousand each month for the next 12 months represents an annual growth rate of +2.41% The annual growth rate from a year ago beginning February 2022 was +2.87%; the average annual growth rate from 5 years ago beginning February 2018 was +.96%; from 15 years ago beginning February 2008 it was +.78%. America needs growth around 1.5 percent a year to keep itself employed.


Sector breakdown for 12 Sectors in 000’s of jobs 

1. Natural Resources +0

Natural Resources jobs including logging and mining stayed the same from January with 631 thousand jobs in February. An increase of 0 thousand jobs each month for the next 12 months would be an annual growth rate of +0.0 percent.  Natural resource jobs are up 48 thousand for the 12 months just ended. Jobs in 2000 averaged around 600 thousand with little prospect for growth.  This is the smallest of 12 major sectors of the economy with .4 percent of establishment jobs.

2. Construction +24

Construction jobs were up 24 thousand from January with 7.918 million jobs in February. An increase of 24 thousand jobs each month for the next 12 months would be an annual growth rate of +3.65 percent.  Construction jobs are up 294 thousand for the 12 months just ended. The growth rate for the last 5 years is +1.92%. Construction jobs rank 9th among the 12 sectors with 5.1 percent of non-farm employment.

3. Manufacturing -4

Manufacturing jobs were down 4 thousand from January with 12.983 million jobs in February. A decrease of 4 thousand jobs each month for the next 12 months would be an annual growth rate of -.37 percent.  Manufacturing jobs were up for the last 12 months by 329 thousand. The growth rate for the last 5 years is +.61%; for the last 15 years by -.36%. In 1994, manufacturing ranks 6th among 12 major sectors in the economy with 8.4 percent of establishment jobs.

4. Trade, Transportation & Utility +38

Trade, both wholesale and retail, transportation and utility employment were up 38 thousand from January with 28.862 million jobs in February. An increase of 38 thousand jobs each month for the next 12 months would be an annual growth rate of +1.58 percent. Jobs are up by 301 thousand for last 12 months. Growth rates for the last 5 years are +.93 percent. Jobs in these sectors rank first as the biggest sectors with combined employment of 18.9 percent of total establishment employment.

5. Information Services -25

Information Services jobs were down 25 thousand from January with 3.075 million jobs in February. A decrease of 25 thousand jobs each month for the next 12 months would be an annual growth rate of -9.68 percent. (Note 2 below)  Jobs are up by 83 thousand for the last 12 months. Information jobs reached 3.7 million at the end of 2000, but started dropping, reaching 3 million by 2004 and has slowly come back to 2.7 million in the last decade. Information Services is a small sector ranking 11th of 12 with 1.9 percent of establishment jobs.

6. Financial Activities -1

Financial Activities jobs were down 1 thousand from January at 9.105 million in February. A decrease of 1 thousand each month for the next 12 months would be an annual growth rate of
-.13 percent. Jobs are up 123 thousand for the last 12 months.  (Note 3 below) This sector also includes real estate as well as real estate lending. The long term growth rates are now at a 5 year growth rate of +1.32 percent, and a 15 year growth rate of +.64 percent. Financial activities rank 8th of 12 with 5.9 percent of establishment jobs.

7. Business and Professional Services +45

Business and Professional Service jobs went up 45 thousand from January to 22.912 million in February. An increase of 45 thousand each month for the next 12 months would be an annual growth rate of +2.36 percent. Jobs are up 606 thousand for the last 12 months. Note 4 The annual growth rate for the last 5 years was +1.98 percent. It ranks as 2nd among the 12 sectors now. It was 2nd in May 1993, when manufacturing was bigger and second rank now with 14.7 percent of establishment employment. 

8. Education including public and private +30

Education jobs went up 30 thousand jobs from January at 14.300 million in February. An increase of 30 thousand jobs each month for the next 12 months would be an annual growth rate of +2.54 percent. These include public and private education. Jobs are up 374 thousand for the last 12 months. (note 5) The 15 year growth rate equals +.44 percent. Education ranks 5th among 12 sectors with 9.3 percent of establishment jobs

9. Health Care +63

Health care jobs were up 63 thousand from January to 21.109 million in February. An increase of 63 thousand each month for the next 12 months would be an annual growth rate of +3.58 percent. Jobs are up 845 thousand for the last 12 months. (note 6) The current month has not recovered health care job growth. The health care long term 15 year growth rate has been +1.85 percent lately compared to +3.58 percent for this month’s jobs. Health care ranks 3rd of 12 with 13.5 percent of establishment jobs.

10. Leisure and hospitality +105

Leisure and hospitality jobs were up 105 thousand from January to 16.535 million in February.  (note 7) An increase of 105 thousand each month for the next 12 months would be an annual growth rate of +7.67 percent. Jobs are up 999 thousand for the last 12 months. More than 80 percent of leisure and hospitality are accommodations and restaurants assuring that most of the new jobs are in restaurants. Leisure and hospitality ranks 7th of 12 with 10.3 percent of establishment jobs. It moved up to 7th from 4th in the pandemic decline.

11. Other +9

Other Service jobs, which include repair, maintenance, personal services and non-profit organizations went up 9 thousand from January to 5.826 million in February. An increase of 9 thousand each month for the next 12 months would be an annual growth rate of +3.72 percent. Jobs are up 177 thousand for the last 12 months. (note 8) Other services had +.34 percent growth for the last 15 years. These sectors rank 10th of 12 with 3.8 percent of total non-farm establishment jobs.

12. Government, excluding education +28

Government service employment went up 28 thousand from January at 12.096 million jobs in February. An increase of 28 thousand each month for the next 12 months would be an annual growth rate of +2.76 percent. Jobs are up 207 thousand for the last 12 months.  (note 9) Government jobs excluding education tend to increase slowly with a 15 year growth rate of
+.04 percent. Government, excluding education, ranks 7th of 12 with 8.0 percent of total non-farm establishment jobs.


Sector Notes__________________________

(1) The total cited above is non-farm establishment employment that counts jobs and not people. If one person has two jobs then two jobs are counted. It excludes agricultural employment and the self employed. Out of a total of people employed agricultural employment typically has about 1.5 percent, the self employed about 6.8 percent, the rest make up wage and salary employment. Jobs and people employed are close to the same, but not identical numbers because jobs are not the same as people employed: some hold two jobs. Remember all these totals are jobs. back

(2) Information Services is part of the new North American Industry Classification System(NAICS). It includes firms or establishments in publishing, motion picture & sound recording, broadcasting, Internet publishing and broadcasting, telecommunications, ISPs, web search portals, data processing, libraries, archives and a few others.back

(3) Financial Activities includes deposit and non-deposit credit firms, most of which are still known as banks, savings and loan and credit unions, but also real estate firms and general and commercial rental and leasing.back

(4) Business and Professional services includes the professional areas such as legal services, architecture, engineering, computing, advertising and supporting services including office services, facilities support, services to buildings, security services, employment agencies and so on.back

(5) Education includes private and public education. Therefore education job totals include public schools and colleges as well as private schools and colleges. back

(6) Health care includes ambulatory care, private hospitals, nursing and residential care, and social services including child care. back

(7) Leisure and hospitality has establishment with arts, entertainment and recreation which has performing arts, spectator sports, gambling, fitness centers and others, which are the leisure part. The hospitality part has accommodations, motels, hotels, RV parks, and full service and fast food restaurants. back

(8) Other is a smorgasbord of repair and maintenance services, especially car repair, personal services and non-profit services of organizations like foundations, social advocacy and civic groups, and business, professional, labor unions, political groups and political parties. back

(9) Government job totals include federal, state, and local government administrative work but without education jobs. back



Jobs are not the same as employment because jobs are counted once but one person could have two jobs adding one to employment but two to jobs. Also the employment numbers include agricultural workers, the self employed, unpaid family workers, household workers and those on unpaid leave. Jobs are establishment jobs and non-other. back


Tuesday, September 6, 2022

Wilmington's Lie - A Review


David Zucchino, Wilmington’s Lie: The Murderous Coup of 1898 and the Rise of White Supremacy, (NY: Grove Atlantic Press, 2020)

In Wilmington’s Lie readers get a historical account of race relations and the overthrow of Democracy by white supremacists in 1898 Wilmington, North Carolina. Zucchino has a brief prologue introducing the violent day of November 10, 1898 and a brief epilogue at the end of a 352 page narrative divided into three chronological parts. Part I has 62 pages in eight chapters that narrate Wilmington from the end of the Civil War to March 1898. Part II has 120 pages and 17 chapters that narrates the period from March 1898, until election day November 8, 1898. Part III has 163 pages in 12 chapters that returns to the post-election day of November 10, 1898, and onward into a narrative account of the violent aftermath of election day and the end of voting for black people in the south.

Part I gives a view of Wilmington life when former slaves had jobs and some freedom, liberty and civil rights as a legacy of reconstruction. Readers meet some of the white and black people that will be part of the narrative in Part II and III. These are especially Alfred Moore Waddell, known as Colonel Waddell, a white supremacist, Josephus Daniels, a white supremacist newspaper owner-publisher and later a cabinet member for President Woodrow Wilson, and Alexander Lightfoot Manly, a black journalist.

Part II moves along covering key events in the campaign to overthrow democracy and end black voting in Wilmington. Readers learn the depression of 1893 left rural whites so impoverished they voted with the freed slaves and progressive whites to elect Republican candidates and defeat the white Supremacist democratic party in some local and state offices like Wilmington. Blacks outnumber whites in Wilmington: 11,324 black, 8,731 white.

To the white supremacist’s black participation was “negro domination” that could not be tolerated. These Part II chapters gives dates and details of events in the campaign to suppress black voting in the months leading up to the November 8, 1898 election. It gives details of organizing white racist men into a para-military force of Red Shirts.

On August 18, 1898 multiple North Carolina newspapers published remarks of Rebecca Latimer Felton who demanded “The black fiend who lays unholy and lustful hands on a white woman in the state of Georgia shall surely die!” She wanted black man seen with a white women to be lynched. Alexander Manly published a reply to Felton in his newspaper the Daily Record. His reply included “Tell your men that it is no worse for a black man to be intimate with a white woman, than for a white man to be intimate with a colored woman.” Manly’s reply turned into an excuse to rally white supremacists.

On October 24, 1898 Colonel Waddell spoke at Thalian Hall in Wilmington, N.C. where he claimed whites endured “intolerable conditions” imposed on whites by the “ragged rabble of negroes.” . . .  “We are resolved to change them, if we have to choke the current of the Cape Fear with carcasses.” These two episodes illustrate a small part of the campaign of various white men and their varied plots to promote fear through speeches and newspaper stories that included false claims that blacks were planning a violent uprising with intention to kill whites.

Zucchino includes efforts by blacks and some white Republicans to contact President McKinley and North Carolina governor Daniel Russell to intervene, but to no avail. The white supremacy campaign succeeded. Few blacks were able to vote and the white supremacist Democrats were swept into office.

Part II ends with the November 8 election and Part III narrates the violent aftermath. Prevailing in the elections did not remove all blacks from elected office or appointed jobs, or put them in their place. Stealing the election without outside opposition only emboldened the white supremacists to further violence against blacks. Beginning November 10, a white mob of Red Shirts encouraged by Colonel Waddell burned the Manly newspaper offices. From that Red Shirts invaded black neighborhoods shooting and killing black men hopelessly outgunned. Zucchino takes three chapters and 39 pages narrating the day’s violence and slaughter of blacks.

After the killing stopped armed white supremacist groups patrolled the streets while people like Colonel Waddell removed the elected government, some white and some black, and targeted other blacks and whites to banish from Wilmington under threat of death. The Red Shirts roamed about and much of the terrified black community fled to the surrounding forests and swamps. Zucchino narrates the stories of these events and the narrow escape of Manly and others.

The white ministers and others celebrated the return of white supremacist rule. Five days after the killings Josephus Daniels staged a celebration attended by thousands he titled a “Victory, White Supremacy and Good Government Jubilee” at Raleigh. Visitors arrived on reduced fare trains greeted with flaming tar barrels and bonfires. Fireworks lit up darkening skies on a crisp autumn evening. “Every man had a torchlight which gleamed and blinked like the eye of some mighty cyclops,” Daniels newspaper reported.

Zucchino goes on to explain the timid and failed effort of President McKinley and his administration and Governor Daniel Russell to make any response to the killings and end of Democracy and to explain the long term method to end black voting for seventy years. The U.S. Constitution demands the federal government guarantee a Republican form of government in the states. Instead it would be Jim Crow, the poll tax and the literacy test where the white supremacists devised a crude method to have illiterate whites vote by allowing a literacy test exception for those who had parents or grandparents that voted before 1867.

Zucchino writes a thirty-three page epilogue that allows comparing the present attitudes and voter ID laws in the context of the past, and recounts events from a hundred anniversary observance in 1998. In 2000 the North Carolina legislature sponsored a state commission to investigate the cause and effect of the 1898 coup that is available on the Internet. The report concluded the coup was a documented conspiracy. There was also student protest in 2015 at the University of North Carolina objecting to buildings named after white supremacists. All of the principal figures are dead by 2020 but Zucchino ended the book reviewing some post-coup d'état history and interviewing some remaining family members, especially of Josephus Daniels and Alex Manly, in an apparent search for regret, but regret implies change of heart which never comes easily.

The Book Wilmington’s Lie starts with a good title. It happens often that people of influence with the opportunity to do the right thing, who then choose the wrong thing, want to cover it up with excuses and delete it from history as happened with Wilmington. It took a hundred years before an accounting and Wilmington’s Lie should be considered a thorough and orderly accounting of it, although not the only one, it is the latest one.

The book reads easily in well organized short chapters that maintain a readable narrative style. The writing avoids academic excess. Chapter titles often identify an event or subject in the chapter to come. Zucchino avoids moralizing and leaves the reader to judge the evidence, which he documents carefully. The book includes a lengthy bibliography.

As the story moves along I would say the narrative has embedded in it the chronology of steps needed for a coup d'état. A coup d'état requires one or a few completely unscrupulous authoritarian leaders-demagogues to unify a group by embellishing their grievances, perverting the facts, and encouraging their hatred toward a definable target. Targets are usually racial minorities although it could be elite’s, religious groups, immigrants and others. Democracy needs persuasion and a majority, but a coup d’etat needs the unifying power of hatred and it needs violence and assassination to generate fear in the majority. A coup d’etat brings minority rule where fear subdues the majority into passive acceptance. Just talking and speeches do not succeed in that the victims can not be easily deceived with the lies and misconduct going on around them. Patience will be necessary because it takes time to convince authoritarian followers they can murder their hated targets without consequence, and for the majority to convince themselves to do nothing about it. It is worth noting that Wilmington and the atrocities there preceded Adolf Hitler and deserve comparison to Trump. The book received recognition with a Pulitzer Prize, which it deserved, but even so it is a sobering account for a country claiming to be a democracy.