Economic Update… More Good News Than Bad

Posted by Bruce W. Woolpert on Mar 18, 2015

While the U.S. economy have been suffering from relatively high unemployment rates, low housing prices, and a lack of public incentive for consumer spending, we are beginning to see a shift in the U.S. economy towards a more optimistic direction, although with certain impediments along the way.  

It has recently been announced that the U.S. workforce grew by 216,000 new jobs in March, 2011 with the private sector adding 230,000 jobs and the public sector declining by 14,000 jobs. The unemployment rate has dropped a whole percentage since November, 2010 and is now at 8.8%. Yet, there stands approximately 13.5 million Americans who are still seeking jobs. Statistic shows that new job numbers would need to increase to 350,000 per month in order to have a major positive impact on the job market.

Though the U. S. economy has shown superior performance and faster growth than Britain, France, Germany, Italy and Japan, the U. S. job market remains the Group’s weakest by a large margin. Due to the speedy developments of our technological advance, employers are discovering that they do not need as many people to maintain higher levels of output; in certain businesses such as assembly plants or manufacturers, the rising intelligence of machinery and robotics are replacing various sectors of human labor because they prove to be more efficient and less expensive.

Furthermore, those who have been laid-off from previous jobs are finding it hard to re-enter the job market due to the fact that employers view those who were laid-off to be less efficient and inadequate employees. On the bright side, although the recent increase in oil prices are causing people to keep tighter grips on their wallets, data shows growth in consumer confidence; for first quarter 2011, numbers for all Bay Area communities show retail sales increased 8.35%. In fact, San Francisco, San Mateo and Santa Clara Counties all have shown double digit improvements. Experts predict that housing prices will continue to fall and won’t reach stability until 2012. 

There continues to be large numbers of home foreclosures. Ultimately, the U.S. economy is starting to move towards a more positive direction. Nevertheless, the Real Estate industry is still taking hard hits from the housing market. The increase in gas prices is also a rising concern that may limit consumer spending to a certain extent.

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