During the last week of April, the U.S. Department of Commerce released its latest report concerning first quarter 2012 economic growth projections. Its findings showed that the national gross domestic product (GDP) likely only increased by 2.2 percent from January to March.
With a 2012 GDP projection of 2.5 percent, many economists anticipated the economy would generate about 135,000 jobs on a monthly basis. At such a pace, the 8.8 million jobs lost between February 2008 and January 2010, would likely not be recovered for at least another three to eight years.
So what lies ahead for the nation’s unemployed? To begin, the United States must add about 125,000 jobs each month to keep up with population growth.
Interestingly enough, the United States is now producing more goods and services that it did at the start of the recession in December 2007, but is doing so with about five million less workers. When examining this level of productivity—employers doing more with a smaller staff—some experts have begun to wonder if there is an overall shift in the workforce beginning to take place, and whether we should reconsider that ‘healthy’ employment now looks like.
The figures have also concerned President Barack Obama and his team of economists. While speaking in Virginia last Friday, the day in which the BLS’ latest “The Employment Situation” report was released, Obama stated, “We’ve got to do more. My message to Congress is going to be, ‘Just saying no to ideas that will create jobs is not an option.’ ”
Alan Krueger, chairman of the White House Council of Economic Advisers, agreed.
“Given the problems the economy has had over the past decade, we need faster growth,” said Krueger. “We need to do more, which is why the President has laid out his blueprint for an American economy that will continue to urge Congress to act to do more to grow the economy.”
Only time will tell whether or not the President’s economic blueprint will eventually lead to the creation of more jobs.