Did you hear?
Big news was reported this past Friday.
The June jobs report noted 217,000 jobs were created in May.
Why is that a big deal? Well, with those new jobs, payrolls have reached the level they were at before the financial collapse nearly six years ago.
Wall Street climbed again and reached yet another new high.
Who hoo! Party time. Celebrate good times. Come on.
The country is back. It’s time to let loose. Be carefree. Break out your wallet. Spend. Buy an extra something.
Go on. It’s all good.
Does it feel like a time to party to you? Are you feeling good about the country’s financial position/status?
First a couple of facts. According to the New York Times, “the working age population has risen by roughly 15 million over the same period” as when the jobs were created.
In January of 2007, the portion of the population in the work force was 66.4%. The current rate is down to 62.8%. There are a number of reasons for this lowered rate. However, one of the biggest reasons is that people have dropped out of the work force because they feel they can’t find a job, and so they stop looking.
In other words, people who want to work have given up hope of being gainfully employed. How sad.
Let’s go beyond those numbers.
Things simply don’t feel right.
Each week, I seem to hear about another person losing a job. On top of that, I don’t recall the last time someone I know getting a big promotion or landing a great new job that they are excited about. They hang on in their jobs feeling that is the most secure place for them.
This makes me wonder why.
I’m in my early 40’s and many in my circle are within this age give or take 10 years. We should be moving up the ranks, taking over senior positions. And some are in such levels of responsibility.
Maybe more are not because those above are not leaving. They have an adult kid they are helping. Their spouse is not working. Their home value tumbled, and so they don’t feel financially secure. The potential reasons abound.
People are concerned. No, not like they were in June of 2009. At that time, the economy was hemorrhaging jobs. The situation was bleak, to say the least.
But now we are in the fourth year of a growing economy.
Things are supposed to be better.
I am sure there are plenty of happy stories, success stories, stories of people getting ahead, progressing.
Yet, I sense fear, concern. People feel relief that they still have a job. The ax has not found them. So, they can still pay their bills. They can take care of their families.
It’s a sense of relief not of exultation.
When will it get better?
We want to feel better.
Original picture is courtesy of Pixabay