Late last week the Department of Labor announced that 144,000 new jobs were created in August. In addition, the minimal gain of 12,000 jobs previously reported for the month of July was revised upwards to 73,000. The unemployment rate dropped to 5.4%.
Over the past 12 months, 1.68 million new jobs have been created. Year to date, 1.44 million new jobs have been created in the US. At our current pace this year, nearly 2.5 million jobs will be created in 2004, which exceeds the administration's projections. You might recall that the Bush administration was largely ridiculed when their projections for 2.2 million new jobs was announced.
This is great news for everyone, except possibly the John Kerry campaign. Of course, the Kerry campaign will likely respond to the tune "these aren't the right kind of jobs, they're low paying". Just to head that argument off at the pass, the Department of Labor just announced that average hourly wages for non-supervisory workersagain increased last month. The wage gains realized in July and August represent the largest back to back gains in 2 years.
It's fair to conclude that our economy is growing, new jobs are being created, and hourly workers are indeed seeing wage growth.