Job seekers speak to recruiters at a job fair sponsored by the New York Department of Labor in New York, June 7, 2012. (Reuters/Keith Bedford)
Alternative seasonal and weather adjustments may shed some light on mixed January jobs report
February 8, 2016,
Each month, many thousands of workers across the U.S. lose their jobs, while others find themselves newly employed. The net number of jobs created or lost in all this activity is an important indicator of the nation’s economic health. But the raw number of jobs created or lost from one month to the next doesn’t say much about the underlying economy. Rather, many of these month-to-month changes are the result of predictable seasonal fluctuations. For example, the fact that the last ten Januarys witnessed the economy shedding over 2.5 million jobs is simply retailers slowing down after the holidays and says nothing about broader economic performance.