Only Five States Saw Statistically Significant Job Gains in May

By at 18 June, 2023, 10:55 am

by Raymond J. Keating – 

The Federal Reserve is bent on slowing down our already slow economy in order to fight inflation. In particular, the Fed has been focused on reining in job growth.

Well, based on the latest state employment report from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the Fed just be making headway in its mistaken, perverse pursuit.

The BLS reported that only five states experienced statistically significant percentage increases in nonfarm payroll employment in May compared to April. (See the following chart from the BLS report.)

As the BLS point out, that means that nonfarm payroll employment “was essentially unchanged in 45 states and the District of Columbia in May 2023.”

The good news was the following: “Over the year, nonfarm payroll employment increased in 42 states and was essentially unchanged in 8 states and the District.” But again, the Fed is intent on putting such employment growth to bed.

It also pays to keep in mind that the national employment report wasn’t as unabashedly positive as widely reported (see SBE Council’s analysis), and that employment tends to be a lagging indicator.

In the end, inflation is not about too many jobs being created, too many people working, or the economy growing too fast. Instead, it’s about money supply outrunning money demand, and that means that economic growth, that is, increased production, works against inflation. Price stability and economic growth form a virtuous circle, whereby growth helps to diminish inflation, and lower inflation feeds economic growth.

Raymond J. Keating is chief economist for the Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council. His latest books on the economy are The Weekly Economist: 52 Quick Reads to Help You Think Like an Economist and The Weekly Economist II: 52 More Quick Reads to Help You Think Like an Economist.


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