We have all heard the news by now.
- The economy is creating tons of jobs.
- The DOW is soaring to new highs.
But here is what they aren’t telling you. There is a line in the jobs report that describes the "Aggregate Weekly Hours" and we have learned that the net hours worked by each worker dropped. That effectively comes out to be 500,000 net jobs lost if measured in total hours worked.
In April, companies hired 165,000 more workers, but they cut everyone’s hours (on average) by 12 minutes. That doesn’t sound like much of a decline, but spread out over the 135 million-strong work force, the decline in hours worked is the equivalent of firing more than 500,000 workers while keeping hours steady.
The 0.4% decline in hours worked in April means the economy isn’t quite as strong as you’d think on first glance.
Here is what I think happened. To get from under having to abide by Obamacare, employers slashed hours and then were forced to hire more workers to make up the slack.
Because there is still a net loss of hours worked, the economy continues to get sicker.