Saturday, August 19, 2006

New Jersey Unemployment Rising

From the Philadelphia Inquirer:

N.J. joblessness is among the fastest-rising

New Jersey's unemployment rate is rising faster than almost any other state as employment in the state's private sector declines.

Telecommunications and drug companies once produced high-paying, high-technology jobs for New Jersey, but those companies have been struggling, and that has had a ripple effect on the job market, experts say.

"We were riding the wave, and when the wave broke on the shore, we got people caught in the fallout," said Steven Director, a Rutgers University professor of management, who follows employment trends for the Society for Human Resource Management.

In July, the unemployment rate rose to 5.1 percent, up from 4.4 percent in July 2005, according to a report yesterday from the U.S. Labor Department. Only Mississippi, which was ravaged by hurricanes last year, saw a more rapid rise in the unemployment rate. New Jersey had the second-biggest increase, followed by Rhode Island, Arkansas and Nevada.
...
Virtually all of this year's private-sector job gains have been in the service industries, which typically pay less.

"We used to have the advantage of the pharmaceutical and high-tech companies. They were all booming and expanding. That gave us a strong source of high-paying jobs," Director said. "All of those companies have taken some hard hits."

17 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Where are all these wonderful high paying jobs that everyone speaks of??

You know the positions that pay between $150,000 - $200,000 a year and can allow you to live in an apartment larger than a coat closet???

You would think that everyone makes $200,000 a year or more when everyone is walking around in $300 jeans, one bedroom apartments which average $3,000 a month or $2,000 in hudson county & when $600,000 one bedroom condos sell out upon completion.

Does everyone work on Wall Street?? Or are most people under 35 involved in some type of illegal activity -- prostitution, drug deals, selling babies on the black market???

8/19/2006 08:27:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

anon 09:27:18,

Its called debt my friend.
The credit card has replaced good paying jobs. This is the source of all economic problems (In my opinion). I believe this is also the seed of the RE housing bubble. We have outsourced alot of jobs, so we don't produce anything, so the Fed has extended cheap credit as a way to replace outscourced jobs.

That is why I always bitch about "Made in China". Its a far more serious problems than most people realize (Walmart, Home Depot, Target blah, blah, blah).

Like I always say, thank god we have a strong military. Otherwise we all would be screwed along time ago. Our strong military is what allows us to have the reserve currency of the world and allows oil to be traded in dollars. Other countries shit their pants if they think our military is coming there way.

When I was in the USMC. My favorite saying was "You mess with the best, you die like the rest".
Use your imagination....

Also, because of our strong militrary, we have been able to blackmail or bully foreign companies for intellectual property. Happens all the time. You always here the talkng heads say, hey we may be outscourcing manual jobs, but we have a great intellectual think tank in America. But I say, no we don't, we just steal it from whom we want and claim its ours, or we just buy them out (i.e the power of reserve currncy). Example. Apple, forget Steve Jobs, its all the damn people he bought from China it what made Apple.

Also, we like to keep intellectual property for reasons "of national security" and keeps our economy strong. Well, stronger than the rest of the world. But that is starting to shift and the batton is being passed.

SAS

8/19/2006 09:30:00 AM  
Blogger Rob Ryley said...

"That is why I always bitch about "Made in China". Its a far more serious problems than most people realize (Walmart, Home Depot, Target blah, blah, blah)."

Trade with China, or any other country, is not the problem. It is the fact the U.S. pays for these exports with growing debt that is the problem.

It makes absolutely no sense to produce a good or service when you can purchase it cheaper from elsewhere.

On the other hand, it makes sense to import a product even if it is cheaper to produce it yourself, if the time you save by importing allows you to devote more time to production of more profitable goods.

This is the principle of comparative advantage, which is all to often lost in these discussions on jobs and trade.

Without cheap Chinese goods, I shudder to think where Joe Sixpack would be, with stagnant wage growth, and the Fed expanding credit like mad.

The cheap Chinese goods have masked the rampant inflation caused by the govt. debt, and Fed monetary manipulations.

Although you didn't say it, I sense a desire for protectionism--"keep jobs in America!" is the standard populist rallying cry. Forgive me if I misinterpret you.

The wage level in the U.S. is the highest in the world. A good part of this is due to worker productivity, but another part is due to govt. interference in the labor market that keeps wages higher than they would ordinarily be.

By definition, high wages are a cost on business, and reduce profits. If profits determine what goods get produced, it should be obvious that lowering the profit levels on goods produced in the U.S. by mandating (through various means) higher wages and benefits for U.S. workers guarantees that employers will look for lower cost alternatives.

Add to the fact that the labor market isn't flexible (there are barriers to entry in virtually all occupations, let alone the cost in time and money for training), it seems to me that the U.S. worker is in for some tough times.

Employers can move work out of the country faster than other sectors can train workers to produce goods and services in demand.

Is this sad state of affairs the fault of business (searching for profit), or is it the fault of govt. for instituting a system that penalizes employers for production in the U.S.?

8/19/2006 11:25:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Rob Ryley,

You are correct. I agree with most of what you say. But, I think China is more of a problem then you may feel. Just opinions here..

I think this country has dug itself a hole. A point of no return sort of speak..

But, do go back and read my blog a little closer, think you may have missed the point or I was not as clear as I should of been.

Americans do not have high paying jobs anymore, they are strapped, depending on "cheap goods" from China. Because no more higher paying jobs, the Fed has extended credit, a easy money supply, which carried over to first the dot.coms and now RE bubble. We have outscorced and are in the process of outscorcing our middle class. There was a time working at GM, Ford, Honeywell, Kenmore, was a good middle class job. Those days are gone forever. Just goto Ohio, Michigan, Illnois, then goto China. You will shit.

So, we have created our own dependency on cheap goods.

Just my opinion.

Time will tell.

;)
SAS

PS- A third world country is a country that does not have a middle class. I fear this is what USA is becoming. Because anyone whom is middle class is getting squeezed to death, and they do it to themselves most of them.

8/19/2006 12:24:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Rob Ryley,

"Is this sad state of affairs the fault of business (searching for profit), or is it the fault of govt. for instituting a system that penalizes employers for production in the U.S.?"

This is a very good point and a tough one to answer.

;)
SAS

8/19/2006 12:27:00 PM  
Blogger Rob Ryley said...

"Americans do not have high paying jobs anymore, they are strapped, depending on "cheap goods" from China. Because no more higher paying jobs, the Fed has extended credit, a easy money supply, which carried over to first the dot.coms and now RE bubble. We have outscorced and are in the process of outscorcing our middle class. There was a time working at GM, Ford, Honeywell, Kenmore, was a good middle class job. Those days are gone forever. Just goto Ohio, Michigan, Illnois, then goto China. You will shit."

I agree with you that the U.S. is at a point of no return. I am also aware of the strain people in the Mid west, specifically the areas you mention, are suffering.

But does it make sense to blame the Chinese for policies that our elected representatives instituted decades ago?

Are the Chinese to blame for the creation of the Federal Reserve in 1913? The U.S. was functioning very well without a so-called
"elastic" currency, and the gold standard prevented the very imbalances we are now experiencing.

Are the Chinese responsible for the failed "Great Society" programs, instituted by FDR, that are now on their way to bankrupting the country?

Are the Chinese to blame for LBJ's "guns and butter" policy, that lead to (at the time) huge budget deficits?

Are the Chinese to blame for Nixon taking the U.S. dollar off any sort of tie to gold, and creating a global system of trade that is based on ultimately worthless paper?

Are the Chinese also to blame for the expansion of all sorts of entitlement programs, that drive up taxes, and the costs of education, health care, and other goods and services?

Are they also responsible for the expansion of military spending, in order to win the "Cold War?"

For better or worse, those were the decisions of leaders the American people elected.

The worst you can say about the Chinese are that they are enablers, much like a bar enables an alcoholic to get drunk. But it is the alcoholic who decides to enter, and can only blame himself for stepping in and taking the drink.

8/19/2006 12:41:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Rob Ryley,

I totally agree with you.
We are the ones whom have done this to ourslves and not China. China was just smart enough and good enough to take advantage of the situation. Thanks to our own Tom foolery, we have done this.

By no means do I blame China, but they do crooked deals, so they are not totally innocent, they know how to play hardball just as good as anyone. Ex. pegging their currency, limiting quotas, banning USA import products if they start selling better than China products.

This is just a big ugly. The Fed has to go...you agree? But that will never happen
SAS

8/19/2006 12:58:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I really do believe that Americans have lost their ability to compete and win. The old American virtues of out-witting, out-thinking, turning a minus into a plus.

Instead our leaders (both business and gov't) are made to look like bumbling idiots ready to give away the store in exchange for a few beads and a pat on the back.

No wonder Putin (Russia) looks at us with pure contempt and disbelief. And China. And Venezula. And ... well, any fast talking, fast thinking crew willing to come over and sell the rubes (the US) useless crap in exchange for the country itself.

Want the latest in nuclear devices. Yeah, yeah a few fruit trees in exchage sounds like a fair deal. Wanta buy our ports? Sure, why not? They are just sitting there getting wet anyway.

Our education system is a joke, US students are viewed as the village idiot in other countries. But what can you expect when science classes are replaced by classes in superstition?

8/19/2006 08:15:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yup, and teachers can't even teach anymore.

Teacherrs are teaching these dumb kids how to take multiple choice tests and sensativity and political correctness bullshit while they watch MTV.

These kids can't read, write, and formulate a sentence.

When I use to teach at Tuck, I was always amazed that the best and brightest kids were always the foreigners, especially the ones from China. Hands down, they made the American kids look like the turd graders ;)

oh well.

SAS

8/19/2006 08:25:00 PM  
Anonymous dreamtheaterr said...

I would to share my opinion (and only my opinion) as someone who grew up in India and have been in the US the past 5 years. Hopefully, my opinion is not too kiddish, since I'm just 29!

Cheap labor and advances in telecommunications have broken down the high wages the US commanded previously. Outsourcing has driven down costs and jobs, and exponentially due to the nature of capitalism. All CEOs care about is the stock price and hitting quarterly targets giving two hoots to the impact of US families losing breadearners. If decreasing costs x% helps, so be it....screw John Doe.

The US education system, atleast till one hits the Masters level is becoming a joke. I did my Masters in the US, and its amazing how little is taught in high school and undergrad compared to Asian countries. When you have 1.2 billion in China and 1 billion in India compete for getting an education, they are just much more driven and motivated to excel. Even a few percentage of their graduates is a huge number in absolute terms to compete with the US.

Just look around the universities in the US and see the amount of overseas students in Masters and PhD programs in science and technology. US atudents are busy studying liberal arts or the life of Paris Hilton. Apparently, the US produces more physical therapists and trainers than scientists these days.

I don't mean to put down American kids coz there are plenty of bright and hard working ones around. But growing up pampered and watching their parents keep up with the Joneses gives them a sense of entitlement they think they deserve. They don't know what it feels like to have their backs to a wall and work hard. Again, there are always exceptions, so please don't think I mean to put down all kids.

My guess is going forward the value of an Ivy League education will not be worth it financially since there will be kids coming out of Universities abroad equally equipped and at a fraction of the tuition cost.

SAS, I disagree with the US strong military being a deterrent to most countries. Everyone knows the US is advanced militarily - nothing new in that. What is new is the way wars are being fought now. How the US is bogged down in Iraq, and how Israel did in Lebanon is a harbinger of the future. Outlays for out of control healthcare costs and military is what is going to bog down the US in the future. The sheer wastage and overheads here is mind boggling - why does the grass on a thruway have to be manicured for heavens sake??!! Coming from a country where 300 million people (the US population incidently) don't get 2500 calories a day to eat, I find it unbelievable how much wastage takes place here.And we pay for it indirectly.

On another note, anyone going to see Steely Dan and Michael McDonald to the PNC, Holmdel on 23rd?

8/19/2006 10:49:00 PM  
Anonymous Stan said...

Dreamtheaterr -
Don't worry. The Indian and Chinese will become complacent and lazy too. It usually takes two generations of good jobs and stability.

8/20/2006 08:40:00 AM  
Blogger Rob Ryley said...

Dreamtheater wrote:

"The US education system, atleast till one hits the Masters level is becoming a joke. I did my Masters in the US, and its amazing how little is taught in high school and undergrad compared to Asian countries. When you have 1.2 billion in China and 1 billion in India compete for getting an education, they are just much more driven and motivated to excel. Even a few percentage of their graduates is a huge number in absolute terms to compete with the US."

If you believe the U.S. educational system is designed to prepare students for the real world, you would only be partly correct.

It is designed to indoctrinate students into accepting the status quo. Students are taught to follow orders, not to think for themselves.

And on the rare times they are "taught" to think independently, they are taught lies and falsehoods to think about, so they end up more confused than ever (and easily manipulated).

"Apparently, the US produces more physical therapists and trainers than scientists these days."

Curious, why the slam against Physical Therapists??? Personal training and Physical Therapy are 2 very different things.

As for scientists--do you know what the unemployment rates are for Ph.D's in the sciences are--astronomically high for physics and math. Why hire an American when you can get a qualified Indian or Russian physicist for much less?

8/20/2006 09:03:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

this guy from india is right on
the money.

America has become just plain Lazy,

throw a little greed into the mix
as well.

And keeping up with the Jones
is an understatement.

Our colleges are craking out
students who for the most part
can't even balance a check book.

But they know how to get a credit
card, know where the hot clubs are
and know how to lease a hot car.

Read the article today in the record about meddling by parents.

It to , is right on the money.

8/20/2006 09:43:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You bloggers on this thread are right on the money. There might be some small details we disagree on, but on the overall trend it seems we all agree on.

But, to the guy from India. All I can say is never underestimate the US military. x-USMC myself, and I can tell you there are many sides to the military. There is a huge side that nobody sees, especially the loose lips media never sees. This side is so efficient, so deadly, so good, yes....countries still shit their pants and if they don't, they will if this element comes to their shores. This buisness about military being overstrectched is all media hype.

Therefore, the only way countries can bring us down is economically, which some seem to be doing with our own help (China), and terrorism. Terrorism changes publics opinions. A very powerful force to change public opinion.

The only military that I can think of that is a good as USA is Israel.
Believe it or not, Iraq actually did have a pretty good military at one time....but we changed all that in the first Gulf War.

But the IDF, whew baby...don't want to piss them off.

SAS

8/20/2006 01:30:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

SAS,
I totally agree about the American military being the best trained and equipped of any in the world, but I think you'd better rethink your position concerning if it's over stretched or not. Just ask the guys who have served multiple tours in SW Asia, or the reserve units that keep being reactivated.
I think if we had enough people much of this wouldn't be occurring.
I hate to say it, but a draft is not all that far fetched anymore and I’m you remember the affect that has upon the public sentiment. Public opinion and the political pressures from it can easily steer the course of the country.
Remember we didn’t lose Vietnam, the public lost its desire to let us win it for it.
TC

8/20/2006 07:46:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

TC,

We are on the same page.
But, the military is not overstretched, its just that the politicans chose not to send all that is needed, therefore stressing what we have there. Make sense??

Yes, we didn't lose Vietnam, we just fought it with one arm behind our backs because the damn politicans didn't want to piss off the Russians. Remember that one?

In the same sense, we are fighting with one arm behind out back in Iraq and Crapistan. We already pissed off the world by being there, so we don't want to piss them off even more....so we cut back.

But, when push comes to shove and we have to really defend ourselves, hands down, nobody can beat our military. Noway, nohow.

SAS

8/21/2006 08:34:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

NJ fails at life...

8/21/2006 10:19:00 AM  

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