July 9, 2011

ROBERT SAMUELSON: That Awful Jobs Report.

The question now is whether the meager job creation heralds prolonged stagnation. Many economists have predicted a rebound in the second half of the year: Zandi expects the economy to grow at a 3.5 percent annual rate, up sharply from the estimated 1.9 percent for 2011’s first half; Gault is slightly below that. Both are sticking to their forecasts. They expect the negatives of the first half to reverse: lower gasoline prices will bolster consumer spending; restored supply chains will raise auto production; better weather will permit more construction spending.

But the bleak job market raises the specter of much worse. It could trigger a vicious circle.

Plus, whenever Obama opens his mouth, an industry dies. . . .

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