U.S. stocks end down after dismal jobs report

“A report that showed only 88,000 U.S. jobs were added in March reversed the mood on Wall Street Friday, sending stocks downward,” UPI reports.

“Economists had expected 200,000 new jobs but the total turned out to be the lowest in 10 months,” UPI reports. “Although the jobless rate was down a notch, to 7.6 percent, it was largely due to people dropping out of the workforce.”

Read more in the full article here.

“Some of the weakness appeared due to higher tax rates that took effect in January. While recent reports have pointed to relatively buoyant retail sales in January and February, Friday’s data showed retailers actually cut staff in March by 24,100, making it the hardest-hit sector last month,” Jason Lange reports for Reuters. “The report rattled investors and sent U.S. stocks lower, contributing to the biggest weekly decline for share prices this year. Benchmark Treasury debt yields fell to their lowest this year and the dollar declined against a basket of currencies.”

“The jobless rate fell to its lowest since December 2008, but the report showed that much of the drop was due to the labor force shrinking by 496,000 people,” Lange reports. “That pushed the labor force participation rate – the percentage of working-age Americans either with a job or looking for one – to 63.3 percent, its lowest since 1979… Some of the people dropping out of the labor force are retiring or going back to school, but others have given up the job hunt out of discouragement.

Read more in the full article here.

“The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost around 41 points, or 0.28 percent, to 14,565. The S&P 500 shed almost 7 points, or 0.43 percent, to close at 1,553,” Scott Rubin reports for Benzinga. “The Nasdaq Composite fell 21 points, or 0.65 percent, to 3,204.”

Rubin reports, “Shares of Pandora Media (NYSE: P) fell almost 8 percent on Friday as investors worried that Apple’s (NASDAQ: AAPL) iRadio could hurt the company.”

Read more in the full article here.

47 Comments

        1. How on earth does this depend on your perspective?? Please explain. We have the lowest labor participation since 1979 which was the end of Jimmy Carter’s presidency which brought us Iran, gas lines and double digit unemployment paired with double digit inflation.

          How can you put a ‘depends on point if view’ stamp on that?

          1. Because then they can deny it through the vague lens of ‘transitioning the new economy for the betterment of its citizens’ or some yada yada crap like that.

            1. …and I do know the difference between “your” and “you’re.” There was a floating MacMall thingy over the composition window on my iPad and I guess I didn’t see the flaky misspellings.

            2. I’ve been working for most of the last 36 years and I can tell you my perspective is this economic catastrophe sucks.

              It may AFFECT unemployed harder, or maybe not. Depends on their perspective, and if they ever worked, or if this is the panacea they dreamed and voted for….

            3. Agree 100%, this affects everyone whether unemployed or still working (for now anyhow) Less people working (including the ones the government doesn’t count anymore because they have been out of work “too long” and are now labeled “unemployable”) removes productivity and wealth from out economy and that effects everyone.

  1. How Keynesian.

    It doesn’t work, dummies. Eight years of Obama will hurt America worse than would 16 years of LBJ followed by 16 years of Carter.

    1. Just because the right-wing talking heads repeat how Keynesian economics “doesn’t work” or is “failed” or whatever other BS doesn’t make it true.

      The last thing Republicans want is for people to see that it DOES work, so they have done everything to block it being sufficiently implemented.

      Most credible economists agree the stimulus was not nearly big enough given the conditions of the time, but even that too-small stimulus saved millions of jobs and kept things from being even worse.

      You know what actually demonstrably doesn’t work to create jobs? Cutting taxes on the corporations and the wealthy.

      1. Taxes are 1/3rd what they were in 1970. That, according to the Conservatives, should have created millions of jobs…and it DID! It’s just too bad those jobs were created in Mexico, China, and India instead of in America.

      2. Tclash,
        Every time in history Keynesian economics has failed. Every time.

        He only economists who think the stimulus should have been bigger are Lefties like Paul Krugman (who is virtually a socialist/communist)

        Please, America needs thinking people like you to divorce themselves from their ideology and honestly evaluate what works.

        Lower taxes for small businesses and the rich grow the economy because those entities make jobs by taking risks, starting companies, and hiring employees. We must encourage them because they are the ones who make products and thereby make jobs–not the government and not the poor.

        Please read Basic Economics by Thomas Sowell. It will likely change your outlook as it did mine.

        1. You are flat-out incorrect.

          I appreciate your polite tone, which seems all too rare around here. However, as soon as you start throwing “socialist/communist” around like that, you rob yourself of all credibility.

          Sowell is hardly unbiased.

          It doesn’t matter how low the taxes are on small business and the rich. If demand is low because people can’t afford to purchase things, businesses will not hire.

          I am not an ideologue. I form my ideas about things based on the evidence.

          1. What evidence can you provide that Obama has done a good job? I want facts and verifiable statistics and not opinion and blustering. Start with some facts about how adding thousands of pages of government regulations will help make this country healthier and or make the economy thrive.

            1. Sorry twilight, I am not interested in spending my weekend writing a research paper to post on an internet comment thread. And I’m even less interested in playing your straw man game (At what point was my argument about Obama having done a good job or that we should add thousands of pages of regulations???) Nice try.

            2. I’m not sure I was out to create a straw man, nor did I plan to attack you. I’m very busy too and I don’t have time to attack people on Internet boards who I do not know for no good reason. Maybe there are some amazing things that he has done that I did not notice or pay attention to? From my perspective he has done a lot of damage and only very little positive has come out of his mouth and I have a hard time understanding his popularity. Bill Clinton I totally understand why people liked him, even tho he was a slime ball and still is he was an effective leader. Obama while he is a good father and husband and probably a good man in that sense has been a disaster.

            3. I didn’t think you were attacking me, but thanks for clarifying. Like many people who aren’t in the camp of those who hate Obama regardless of what he does or says, I have found him to be a disappointment. But a disaster? Hardly. Or at least, only a disaster in the way that all modern high-level politicians beholden to a corrupt campaign finance system are a disaster. Or a disaster the way Democrats who run to the center because they are too scared of being attacked by the right and thus provide a very weak vision are. The issue I was bringing up was this blanket dismissal of Keynesian economics as a failure, which is parroted ad nauseum by right wing talking heads and which does not hold up to any amount of honest intellectual scrutiny.

          2. I find it telling that no one on the right is willing to state low the tax rates must go – what is the magic tax rate that makes everything perfect? I also find it instructive to note that no one mentions the fact the growth of any type (with the possible exception of the expansion of the universe) cannot continue without limit. So, even if a very small tax rate might theoretically maximize tax revenues over the next century or millennium, it will not actually do so. First, the government and society would fall apart because of the massive near term reduction in tax revenues. Second, because the massive growth that would be required to fulfill this equation is not achievable/sustainable. There is a more reasonable and realistic answer, and it may not be all that far off from where were are currently.

            The world is not linear, although we often view it that was for the sake of simplicity or necessity. Furthermore, I believe that it is safe to state that a zero tax rate will yield zero tax revenues. That fact alone can be leveraged to logically deduce that tax revenue must start to decline at some point as the tax rate approaches zero even if taxable assets were to grow without bound. In other words, the limit of the tax revenue function as the tax rate approaches zero is zero.

            Similarly, taxation clearly has a damping effect on growth as the tax rates increase towards 100%. Clearly, there are one or more local maxima in the tax revenue function between those extremes. It should also be noted that the tax revenue function will vary with time, so the “optimum” tax rate depends on your overall objective, such as higher near term revenues or largest total revenue over a given time period. That is because it may take some time for the interaction of taxation and growth to manifest.

            Since the tax revenue function is nonlinear and there are local maxima, the logical approach for the U.S. Government is to identify the target tax rate, simplify the tax structure to achieve an end result somewhere close to that tax rate, and then leave things alone and concentrate on controlling and effectively managing spending.

            Also, Include an appropriate mechanism to provide stimulus in a timely manner to the economy in response to crises. Do not rely on slow and ineffective ah hoc solutions that are inevitably rife with pork and special interest giveaways.

            Cease attempts to engineer behavior with core taxes.

            Cease rewarding special interest groups with tax breaks.

            Cease complicating the tax code in general.

            Tax stability is far more valuable to the U.S. economy than a blind and relentless push to reduce taxes at all costs. Stability enables businesses to more confidently forecast and plan.

            Implement this approach and give it time to work. Then assess the results and decide if we should phase in a small tweak. It is as simple (and as difficult) as that.

            1. Here is my basic philosophy with respect to taxes. I agree government needs money to function and taxes are important and necessary to that. I also feel that it takes on a number of roles that it is not ideally suited to, for example health care.

              I feel the rate of GDP that was spent under Clinton is ideal for a peaceful economy at around 18% GDP. We are dramatically and dangerously higher than that with rather dismal results.

              In the end, taxes exist to allow a go we meant to function. I believe the reason we have a government is to serve us, and not the other way around. We are not here to ‘feed the beast’ and to serve government. That’s not the purpose of a government in a free society. I don’t recall many people complaining that government was too small under Clinton. Why can’t we go back to that rate of federal spending? Bush and even worse Obama are not good templates for how we should conduct our economy or federal government.

            2. King Mel
              The sweet spot for taxation is found somewhere on the latter curve. You say no Righties have an answer: but Steve Forbes used to say 17% flat tax. I think it should be between 10-18% percent BUT it must be either a flat tax NO exceptions, no write offs, etc, or a sales tax.

              But Washington DC will never enact either of the above ideas because DC gets its power from directly or indirectly modifying the tax code. Getting Congress to vote for a flat tax or sales tax would be like getting them to castrate themselves. So I see no solution.

          3. TClash,
            “as soon as you start throwing “socialist/communist” around like that, you rob yourself of all credibility.”
            >I don’t see the connection, Krugman’s views border on these philosophies. He is not a free market capitalist. Please don’t let your aversion to those terms prevent you from seeing the point of my statement.

            “Sowell is hardly unbiased.”
            > we all have our innate biases, but whether or not they cloud our judgement of reality is the key. If you read Sowell’s book you will most likely agree with his statements, research and conclusions, because his analysis is sound. Even though I may not agree with some of his cultural views, I found his economic study is spot on – and I suspect you would too.

            “It doesn’t matter how low the taxes are on small business and the rich. If demand is low because people can’t afford to purchase things, businesses will not hire.”
            > You and I look at economics as mirror images of each other. I see it as first you need an entrepreneur to take a risk and build something. Then that creates a demand, the people scrape the money together and buy the product. Then the economic pump is primed and the economy is off and running.

            No one will buy stuff whether they are rich or poor if no one is building anything.

            “I am not an ideologue. I form my ideas about things based on the evidence.”
            > I don’t doubt that you feel this way. And so I challenge you to read Basic Economics, instead of outright dismissing it as written by someone who is not unbiased, and therefore unworthy of your time.

    1. Except the $1.5 trillion deficits, a healthcare takeover that most Americans don’t want and a $800 billion stimulus program that created virtually no jobs but did enrich Obama campaign bundlers.

    2. Put down that crack pipe, botvinnik.
      Might as well say there is no difference between the US and Russia, lakes and the oceans, air and dirt, oil and vinegar……

      1. You are wrong.
        Sorry, but generalizations don’t make a good argument.

        Although some of the things Clinton did right, either because of political expedience, the Republican Congress or both, he has since reneged on, putting him further to the Left than his Moderate beginnings.

        (and no, it is not lost on me that he is doing this for Hilary ’16)

            1. The tyrannical expansion of central power over individual rights via the federal government, imperialist military intervention in undeclared wars over third world countries, the dismantling of American industrial power through the imposition of unsanctioned economic treaties, the rape of the American treasury via international banking cartels.

  2. Not as long as oil prices continue to be around $90 a barrel as they have been the last few years. Bring them down to below $70 dollars and see how fast world economies will recover.

  3. I was originally trying to reply to Stephen above but i hit the wrong button. Sorry about that.
    Anyway to your reply, if some people want high oil prices then be prepared to be mired in this economic situation for a long time to come. The economy cannot grow without world wide demand for goods and services. Europe is a classic example of what I am talking about.
    I have also noticed that each time NYSE goes up, oil prices move in tandem. Coincidence?

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