Bert & Ernie and the gang are working overtime to poo-poo the ongoing economic boom. They are trying to tell us — with a straight face — that “people of color” are being left behind by the current economic growth. We knocked that spin down pretty well in an earlier post.
Now here comes the Bureau of Labor Statistics to finish the job:
In the month of December, the unemployment rate for black Americans dropped to just 6.8 percent, which is the lowest ever recorded. Prior to this month, the previous record was 7.4 percent in 2000.
The government has been tracking unemployment by race for 45 years, since 1972.
White unemployment sits at 3.7 percent, while only 2.5 percent of Asians are unemployed.
The overall unemployment rate is just 4.1 percent.
The number of jobs created in December was 148,000, which is lower than expected. Jobs are the lagging indicator in any economy, so with all the other numbers moving up, hopefully job creation will soon follow.
Average hourly earnings rose 0.3% from the previous month, and are up 2.5% when compared to last year.
With unemployment so low, job growth should mean wage gains. More jobs than people looking for them puts employees in the driver’s seat. Also good news for workers is the Trump administration’s crackdown on illegal immigration. This can only mean better wages and more job opportunities, especially for unskilled, entry, and blue-collar workers — those who have been left behind more than any other group.