Thursday, June 03, 2010

May Monster Employment Index Rises 14% vs. 2009

From today's Monster Employment Report for May 2010:

1. The Monster Employment Index rose one point in May to 134 as employers continue to step-up hiring activity.

2. Year-over-year growth rate climbed for the fourth consecutive month in May, and the Monster Employment Index is now 14% (16 points) above the May 2009 index of 118. 

3. Online demand rose in 12 of the 20 industries monitored by the Index and remained flat in four. Healthcare and social assistance industry saw the strongest rise in online job demand in May.

4. Manufacturing and transportation industries continue 3-month growth trend.

5. Online job demand rose in May in 15 of the 28 major metro markets monitored by the Monster Index, with Orlando registering the largest monthly gain.  Compared to May last year, all metro areas have experienced employment gains. 


At 6/03/2010 8:22 AM, Blogger juandos said...

The somewhat less than optimistic over at Business Insider have the following: 25 Questions To Ask Anyone Who Is Delusional Enough To Believe This Economic Recovery Is Real

At 6/03/2010 10:20 AM, Anonymous gettingrational said...

"The somewhat less than optimistic over at Business Insider have the following ....."

The subject is employment rising and even the Business Insider has employment available listings! Yes, it has been a tough slog for jobs but it is turning.

At 6/03/2010 10:34 AM, Anonymous morganovich said...

another way to look at this is that an incredibly easy comp from a year ago makes this may's % look good.

we seem to be up less this may than we were down last year, so it's still a net loss of jobs and a tepid looking recovery.

high % growth after a massive % drop is to be expected. if this were a strong recovery, the numbers would be significantly higher.

At 6/03/2010 10:35 AM, Anonymous Hydra said...

1. Is a rapidly increasing number of Americans on food stamps a good sign or a bad sign for the economy?

Neither. This is a false dichotomy. Population is growing and aging, population of younger and less skilled workers is growing, and younger workers are more likely to have children and need food stamps. It is a bad sign that businesses can not or will not pay a living wage.

2. So can you please explain again how the U.S. real estate market is getting better?

Foreclosures are not the only measure of the real estate market.

3. Do you think that [missed mortgage paments] is an indication that the U.S. housing market is recovering?

If someone misses a mortgage that is a reflection of their personal finances, not a reflection of the housing market which consists of homes being bought and sold.

4. How can the U.S. real estate market be considered healthy when, for the first time in modern history, banks own a greater share of residential housing net worth in the United States than all individual Americans put together?

Don’t banks “own our homes” until they are paid for? Where is the surprise here? Again, what has this to do with the market which consists of homes being bought and sold?

5. With the U.S. Congress planning to quadruple oil taxes, what do you think that is going to do to the price of gasoline in the United States and how do you think that will affect the U.S. economy?

This may or may not wreck the economy eventuallym Maybe other taxes will be offset. What has that to do with whether the current recovery is real?

6. Do you think that it is a good sign that Arnold Schwarzenegger, the governor of the state of California, says that "terrible cuts" are urgently needed in order to avoid a complete financial disaster in his state?

California could spend its way into trouble regardless of whether the currrent recovery is real, California is ne state.

7. Dozens of U.S. states are in such bad financial shape that they are getting ready for their biggest budget cuts in decades. What do you think all of those budget cuts will do to the economy?

Depends on whether you believe government spending is a stimulus or a drag on the economy.

8. Month after month after month we buy much more from the rest of the world than they buy from us. Wealth is draining out of the United States at an unprecedented rate.

Wealth is not draining out if we profit more from what we sell than they profit on what we buy. How am I (and therefore we) better off if I buy something made here that costs more? Are you proposing government regulation to control what we buy?

9. If you went out and spent one dollar every single second it would take you more than 31,000 years to spend a trillion dollars, how can anyone in their right mind claim that the U.S. economy is getting healthier when we are getting into so much debt?

I’m not spending a dollar a second and I’m not living 31,000 years. How can anyone in their right mind think this has anything to do with whether the economy is recovering?

10. According to one new report, the U.S. national debt will reach 100 percent of GDP by the year 2015. So is that a sign of economic recovery or of economic disaster?

In 2015 that may be a problem if we don’t fix it in the meantime. What has that got to do with whether we are seeing a current recover of economic activity?

At 6/03/2010 10:37 AM, Anonymous Hydra said...

By your argument, then, it is only a tepid looking recovery because the previous crash was so spectacular.

At 6/03/2010 10:42 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

high % growth after a massive % drop is to be expected.

Really? Why would that be?

Businesses are scared to hire and consumers are scared to spend. It is a mutual death grip that takes time and trust to relax.

The closer each side is to death the less they trust the other side. It seems to me the worse the drop the longer it takes to recover. for one thing, you have less to work with when you start.

Will I bounce back faster if last years crop got wiped out, or if I only lost half of it?

At 6/03/2010 10:52 AM, Anonymous morganovich said...

no hydra, that's exactly wrong.

it only looks like a strong recovery because the crash was so deep and the comparisons are so easy. using % changes can be very misleading that way. you need to look at the economy, not its first derivative.

comparing current levels to 2007-8 shows you how weak it actually is and how far off the peak we still are. real manufacturing output still looks like 2002 in actual output. real retail sales look like 2004. actual employment levels are still very low.


your point about missed mortgage payments not being meaningful to the real estate market is pretty specious. they most certainly are. distressed home owners are more likely to need to sell and less likely to want to buy. that has a very direct effect on housing prices.

most of the rest of your arguments equally miss the point.

1. it's a bad sign. its' a sign of economic duress and will increase government spending.

4. a specious argument. lot's of people have equity in their homes or won them outright. the shift towards bank ownership is a sign that fewer do, which is a bad sign for personal balance sheets.

5. increasing prices for inputs through taxes will slow a recovery.

6. cuts in state spending but not in taxes will be a drag on economic performance.

7. same as above - less spending and higher taxes are not good for GDP.

10. it's already a problem with government borrowing crowding out private lending and it's going to keep getting worse.

At 6/03/2010 10:57 AM, Anonymous morganovich said...


it's how %'s work.

if you buy a stock at 100 and it drops to 10, you suffer a 90% loss. if it then rallies to 30, that's a 200% gain. sounds great! but it's not. you're still down 70%.

this is why % changes (first derivative) are so misleading.

we suffered a terrible liquidity crunch in 2008-9 that has abated (though threatens to return) that seized the whole economy up. the return of liquidity and stacks of stimulus have pumped money into the system, but we are nowhere near health levels despite being able to put up impressive sounding percentage gains.

but they only look high because they have such easy comparisons. growth will slow in % terms in the back half of the year as the comps get hard.

At 6/03/2010 10:59 AM, Blogger juandos said...

hydra! hydra! hydra!

What you seem to be pains at is to hide or forget is that most of the 25 questions are dealing with more extortion by the federal government of the taxpayers for the less than useless short term fix...

Consider what we owe now...

So obviously all your answers don't take into account the problems caused by politicos pushing the 'nanny state'...

At 6/03/2010 11:11 AM, Anonymous Hydra said...

it's how %'s work.

if you buy a stock at 100 and it drops to 10, you suffer a 90% loss. if it then rallies to 30, that's a 200% gain. sounds great! but it's not. you're still down 70%.

this is why % changes (first derivative) are so misleading.

I realize that. I don't see how it changes the point. Your argument was that:

1. It is easy to look good now because a year ago was so bad.

2. High growth after a massive drop is to be expected.

My response is that it is also easy to look BAD now because last year was incredibly bad. Depends on how you compare, as you point out.

And I don't see why high growth is to be "expected" after a massive drop. Desired, maybe, but expected, no.

I agree with you comment about missed mortgage payments having an eventual secondary effect, but it is just as specious to use this kind of statement as a condemnation or proof of the entire body of market indicators the MJP has provided.

At 6/03/2010 11:14 AM, Anonymous Hydra said...

pains at is to hide or forget ?

You seem to be at pains to hide or forget that you provided the citation as evidence the economy is not improving.

Whether the economy is improving or not, I thought the questions we utterly stupid and misleading.

Also irrelevant.

At 6/03/2010 11:17 AM, Anonymous Hydra said...

If you want to change the discussion from whether the economy is improving to a discussion of the nanny state, fine.

Just don't count it as a "win" for your previous argument.

At 6/03/2010 11:28 AM, Anonymous Hyder said...

Consider what we owe now...

Yeah, and somewhere a woman has a baby every seven seconds.

We need to find that woman and stop her.


I owe money that I don't expect to be around to pay back.

So what?

Whoever gets the debt will also get the benefit from it in terms of increased property value (if I have invested the borrowed money well).

If not, then the lender screwed up.

It has little to do with whether the economy is doing well, other than the observation that moving some spending from forward to now might mean there is less spending later.

At 6/03/2010 11:35 AM, Anonymous grant said...

According to Keynes anything above zero is the multiplier.

So it's zero and then just makes" + "
without the stimulus.

then add faith hope and belief and thats about it.

I might add there anything else.

At 6/03/2010 11:35 AM, Anonymous Hydra said...

You think food stamps are an extortion by the government for a short term fix to improve the economy?

You ever been hungry?

You think increased foreclosures is due to extortion by the governmnet, to improve the economy?

You think California has budget troubles because of extortion by the government?

You think the banks owning property is due to extortion by the government?

At 6/03/2010 11:40 AM, Anonymous morganovich said...

last year was a liquidity squeeze. such shocks are highly transitory. liquidity dries up, big drop, it comes back, big jump.

the kind of 10-14% increases we are seeing in employment indexes sound huge, but in light of the 20-30% declines that came before, they aren't. a 10% jump after a 5% drop would be huge, but after what we saw, it's just not that big of a deal, especially if monster is including census workers in its numbers (though i don;t know if they are)

i'm not arguing we have not recovered some from the depths of the economic cardiac arrest, merely that the low hanging fruit has been grabbed and that the actual underlying economic trend is quite tepid, not v shaped.

At 6/03/2010 11:43 AM, Anonymous Hydra said...


I don't understand.

I know it is hard to get ahead when multiplying by zero and I know leverage works both ways.

The argument is whether this is a slow recovery or not.

Morganovitch says it is a slow recovery because it is not coming back as fast as the fall before it.

I think you need a different measure. You wouldn't assume you can build a house in a day just because you can knock it down in a day.

It is a diferent process.

At 6/03/2010 11:52 AM, Anonymous Hydra said...

the kind of 10-14% increases we are seeing in employment indexes sound huge, but in light of the 20-30% declines that came before, they aren't.

But you just said percentages on the way up are different....

If you had an incredible drop last year it would take an incredible recovery to make the graph V shape.

But you claim that if the graph is NOT V shape then the recovery is tepid.

I'm sorry, but I can't make sense out of that.


Improving employment is a different process from squeezing [nonexistent] liquidity out of last years bad derivatives. Of course it takes longer.

At 6/03/2010 11:58 AM, Anonymous grant said...

Of course it's a slow recovery but it will pick up.

What happens to the stimulus will decide it!
MP seems to be confident Ithink that is important.

At 6/03/2010 12:09 PM, Anonymous Hydra said...

Grant, I agree (sort of). My mower doesn't run on ether but sometimes it needs a kick start to get it running.

I'm still laughing at the argument that a V-shaped recovery is robust.

If you had a slow decline, would you want a slow recovery so it could be V-shaped and robust?

Then the same guys that argue against government spending come up with a question like this: What do you think all of those [state] budget cuts will do to the economy?


At 6/03/2010 12:10 PM, Anonymous morganovich said...


you are completely missing this.

let me try again:

after a big drop, even moderate recovery can look big in percentage terms when measured from the trough.

however, it's important to realize that it takes a 25% increase from trough to get back to even after a 20% drop from initial conditions.

1 X .80 = .8 X 1.25 = 1

so, a 10% increase after a 20% drop (especially one with such a transitory and proximate cause like a liquidity lock up) is a tepid recovery and nothing like v shaped. even a 20% increase over the same period of time as a 20% decline is not a "v" shape. a 20% gain after a 20% drop leaves you 4% short of initial levels.

it's easier to show 2% growth after a big decline than it was before the drop. the first 2% of recovery is fewer units than the first 2% drop

to be a V in real units, growth measured as a % has to be higher coming out of a downturn than going in. a 2% increase from 80 is 1.6 units, 20% less than a 2% drop from 100 (2 units). we are seeing nothing like that. growth coming out is lower than growth coming in, thus, no V. worse, GDP growth is already slowing as a % when it would be accelerating in a healthy economy undergoing a strong recovery.

At 6/03/2010 12:45 PM, Blogger Mark J. Perry said...

See new post on ISM Non-Manufacturing Business Index showing strong V-shaped recovery, with levels back to pre-recession 2007 levels. Note that this index doesn't rely on year-to-year percentage changes, and still shows a strong V-shaped recovery underway.

At 6/03/2010 12:53 PM, Anonymous morganovich said...


that's an index, not an output level.

it shows growth and contraction, not absolute level. it works just like a % growth indicator. (over 50 = growth, under = contraction)

you are misreading it.

the 9 months above 50 have not done anything like made up for the deeper and longer previous trip below 50.

At 6/03/2010 5:31 PM, Anonymous Hydra said...

No I am not missing anything in this.

You said the crash was so deep.

You said we seem to be up less this may than we were down last year, so it's still a net loss of jobs and a tepid looking recovery.

You said it it was a tepid recovery because it wasn't V shaped.

So if the crash was Deep on the way down and you had a V shaped recovery that would be an extraordinary recovery, not an ordinary one. Therefore it isn't an argument that makes this one a tepid recovery.

I don't need a numerical example to understand a bad idea when I see it.

All I said was it doesn't mean squat as to ANYTHING how fast the previous fall was. You cannot use it to guage the subsequent recoery or any recovery, you need a different measure.

The whole idea of % up vs percent down is meaningless because the comparison is meaningless, not because the percentages have a different base.

I do understand percentages, even though I am a farmer.

At 6/03/2010 5:33 PM, Anonymous Hydra said...

2% growth is 2% growth.

It does not matter what decline (or what increase) preceded it.

At 6/03/2010 5:36 PM, Anonymous Hydra said...

even a 20% increase over the same period of time as a 20% decline is not a "v" shape.

So, if I had a long slow decline I'd want a along slow recovery in order to get that V shape.

And then the recovery would be robust instead of tepid?

You do understand that the V shape means squat worth of nothing, right?

At 6/04/2010 1:12 AM, Blogger Ron H. said...

Grant, quit reading Keynes, and quit quoting him. It's hurting your brain, and your comments aren't making sense.

Keynes was wrong about most things, as should be evident by now. Read Sowell, read Friedman, read Hayek, read von Mises, read Hazlitt. The world will make much more sense. Your brain will quit hurting.

At 6/04/2010 1:54 AM, Blogger Ron H. said...

Hydra said: - "No I am not missing anything in this."

What you are missing in this is that you are missing the entire point. You should probably quit reading graphs, and stop obsessing on Vs. Isn't there some other letter you understand better?

"I do understand percentages, even though I am a farmer."

A Farmer? Now you're a farmer? What happened to being a chemist? or a "chief research scientist"?

You are truly amazing. You seem to have an enormous amount to say on subjects about which you don't appear to have a clue. You argue just to hear your own voice.

There's no need to disagree with every statement someone makes here. There is especially no need to respond in this space to a multi-question opinion piece on another site.

Most commenters here hope to learn from what others have to say. If you too hope to learn anything, you might try reading more carefully and completely, and think about what you have read so that comprehension has a chance to take place.

If you feel that you already know everything you need to know, then you are wasting your time here, and you're certainly wasting everyone else's time with your constant stream of drivel.

And, don't ask any more about the Laffer curve.

At 6/04/2010 7:57 AM, Anonymous morganovich said...


you need a math class buddy. you simply do not understand percentages at all.

if you can't see that 2% of 100 is more than 2% of 80, i'm not really sure what to say to you. we don't live in a first derivative world, we live in a real output world. it takes fewer units to show 2% growth from 80 than you lost to show 2% decline from 100.

"You do understand that the V shape means squat worth of nothing, right?"

apart from being an appalling mangling of the language, this also doesn't make any sense at all. mark argues for a v. i argue against it. a v does matter at is is a benchmark to see if we are recovering as quickly as we declined.

At 6/04/2010 1:45 PM, Blogger juandos said...

"Whether the economy is improving or not, I thought the questions we utterly stupid and misleading"...

Well of you did hydra since you didn't understand the obviousness of them...

Sad, seriously sad sir...


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