Wednesday, May 30, 2012

ASA Staffing Index for Temporary and Contract Employment is Highest for Week 21 Since 2008

The American Staffing Association's (ASA) Staffing Index for temporary employment activity rose to 94 last week, which was the highest index reading for Week 21 since 2008 when the index was also 94.  It's just several points below the 96 index level for the comparable week in 2007.  It's also the highest weekly reading so far this year, and 8% above its year earlier level.  The ASA Staffing Index has historically been a leading indicator for the overall labor market, and the upward trend this year in the index to a four-year high last week could be an indication of broader-based employment gains over the summer months.     


At 5/30/2012 4:06 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

What used to be may not longer be the same. The index might have been an indicator of recovery before but during previous recessions things were not as bad so many months after the recovery. From what I see the markets are telling us that things are not going as well as you imagine.

At 5/30/2012 5:10 PM, Blogger PeakTrader said...

Friday May 4, 2012

Lakshman Achuthan, ECRI's co-founder and chief operating officer said:

"The median recognition lag after a recession begins is about half a year. After the last recession began, it actually took nine months before the consensus view accepted the reality, especially since we had clearly positive real-time GDP readings for the first half of 2008 that were later revised downward.

When we review the year-over-year growth rate of the U.S. Coincident Indicator Index, which includes broad measures of output, employment, income and sales, we find it to be in a clear, cyclical downturn. That is an authoritative indication that overall U.S. economic growth is actually worsening, not reviving."

At 5/30/2012 5:52 PM, Blogger Cabodog said...

We own two companies, both indicative of "main street."

Both companies are experiencing growth (one, in construction, with sales greater now than during the "peak years") and have hired during the past six months to deal with growth.

Rasmussen: "The Rasmussen Employment Index jumped eight points in May to 88.3, the highest finding since January 2008. The Employment Index is up eight points from the beginning of the year and is up 11 points from this time last year. In February, the Employment Index was at 87.7, the highest level in nearly three and a half years. The survey of 8,804 working Americans was conducted in May 2012 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 1 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. "

I see nothing indicating recession, except possibly stock prices. However, my opinion is that those are down more on Europe news rather than concern over the US economy.

Just my two cents, from the front lines.

At 5/30/2012 6:46 PM, Blogger PeakTrader said...

Construction likely turned the corner, although it may recover at a slow rate, from its deep depression.

The E.U. recession and a China hard landing will slow the weak U.S. expansion-recovery.

Contractionary U.S. fiscal policy, or the "fiscal cliff" will cause a recession, and worsen the depression.

At 5/30/2012 7:46 PM, Blogger PeakTrader said...

To begin to close the $1 trillion a year output gap, U.S. GDP will need to expand faster:

U.S. Real GDP Growth

2008 0%
2009 -3.5%
2010 3.0%
2011 1.7%

2012 2.0%?

From the trough in 1991 to the peak in 2007, annual U.S. real GDP growth averaged about 3.2%.

According to the Fed:

Fed Watch: Fed Still Lowering Potential Output Growth Estimates?
March 20, 2012

"Last fall, Dudley thought that growth somewhat above 2.5% would not bring unemployment down, while 2.75% would only have modest impacts.

That suggests an estimate of potential growth around 2.6-2.7%.

We need sustained growth above that rate to absorb the substantial amount of unused productive capacity."

At 5/30/2012 8:20 PM, Blogger VangelV said...

I see nothing indicating recession, except possibly stock prices. However, my opinion is that those are down more on Europe news rather than concern over the US economy.

You don't? How about:


Or This!!

Or This!!!

Or This!!!!

Or This!!!!!

See the problem>

Sectors that traditionally have offered teens their first paying gig — fast-food chains, movie theaters, malls and big-box retailers — have now become the last resorts for out-of-work college graduates or older Americans forced back into the labor force out of sheer financial necessity. The resulting squeeze has left students on the outside looking in.

There is a lot more if you are willing to look. But most people like a happy story and would prefer not to.

At 5/31/2012 11:11 AM, Blogger Jon Murphy said...


I'd be careful about quoting Lakshman Achuthan. He is fast becoming a laughing stalk in the economic forecasting community: jumping at shadows, seeing phantom recessions, relying on a single indicator. He may have been credible before, but he is fast losing it.

At 5/31/2012 11:32 AM, Blogger bart said...

The rate of change in the Conference Board's Online Help Wanted Index continues to fall on a YoY basis, although it's still positive.

The 'new ads only' portion of the index is falling YoY.

At 5/31/2012 6:35 PM, Blogger bart said...

Announced U.S. Job Cuts Jump 67% From Year Ago, Challenger Says


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