The unemployment rate inched down to 10 percent in November as the U.S. economy lost a mere 11,000 jobs, the Labor Department reported Friday. The government also revised its October figures, putting job losses for that month at 111,000 instead of 190,000. But the record numbers of Americans facing long-term unemployment continued to rise, from 5.6 million in October to 5.9 million in November. Is the unemployment crisis easing, or is the pain just beginning? (Watch a CBS report about U.S. job creation)
The jobs crisis is ending: "The bad days for jobs are very close to being over," says Floyd Norris in The New York Times. The "sheer abruptness of the decline in employment" made most companies extremely lean. Now that the recession is over ("Yes, I think it's over") they "may need to add workers quickly for even a small increase in business."
"The job drought may be over"
Job losses are slowing—but bringing them back won't be easy: At this rate, December could actually see some modest job growth, says Joshua Zumbrun in Forbes. That would spell an end to the Great Recession no one could deny. But with the workforce growing, it will still take time -- and fast action from Washington -- to make a dent in the unemployment rate.
"Almost creating jobs!"
Sorry—this will be a jobless recovery: "The job market is getting less bad," says Mark Gongloff in The Wall Street Journal, "but a full recovery remains a distant hope." Globalization and technology have made it easier for companies to eliminate jobs for good. And with 55.1 percent of jobless workers on "permanent layoff, with no hope of getting called back to work," it seems clear that this recovery will be as jobless as the last two were.
"Jobless recoveries: The new normal, it seems"
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- How academia's liberal bias is killing social science
- 43 TV shows to watch in 2014
- How to be the most productive person in your office — and still get home by 5:30 p.m.
- Why the Sony hack changes everything
- Hey, bosses: Stop giving bonuses to your employees
- What would a U.S.-Russia war look like?
- Why torture doesn't work: A definitive guide
- Alien conspiracy theorists think the government is on the verge of spilling big secrets
- You should be furious about Hollywood's gutless retreat on The Interview
Subscribe to the Week