The Right Scoop professed surprise that CNN Early Start anchor and chief business correspondent Christine Romans reported on the latest unemployment figures on Friday morning’s Newsroom program without the usual agony over the Trump administration. The jobs number was “weaker than expected,” they said. But Romans suggested the expectations were too high at this “very low” unemployment rate:
JIM SCIUTTO: So the economists were expecting 190,000 jobs. This one came in significantly below that.
CHRISTINE ROMANS: Yeah, about 155, 000 net new jobs. But look, you are on track this year for almost 2.3 million, and you take the broader view, about 2.3 million jobs created so far this year. That’s already better than last year, and it’s on track to beat 2016, which is a very good year for job creation. So one reason why you might see 150 and not the 200 that some had been expecting is because at 3.7 percent unemployment, that very low unemployment rate, it very well could be not that companies aren’t hiring as much but that they can’t find the workers. This is what you call full employment.
It will be interesting to tease that out in the coming months to see if we are a strong, tight job market right now that you can’t be adding 200,000-plus workers every month without bringing in more workers from someplace else.
She even noted that one manufacturing trade group was saying that investment in metals, in aluminum and steel facilities is firing back up again because of the president’s tariffs on overseas, not the usual take. She just put the latest facts and statements out there.
As Right Scoop noted: “I guess what surprised me is that she could have taken up the other narrative that the economy is slowing down and that there are danger signs of a coming recession…or something. But instead she gave a more positive alternative to why the jobs report wasn’t as great as everyone thought it would be.”