Low Unemployment and Low Productivity: Warning Signs?

The Labor Department reported 4.3% unemployment in May, the lowest it has been since 2001. Productivity, on the other hand, remained flat during the first quarter. While that is an upward revision from the DOL’s expected productivity loss of 0.6%, it’s still a negative drag on economic performance overall. While low unemployment seems like something to celebrate, could that and sluggish productivity portend economic difficulties ahead? And what does wage growth have to do with it? Continue reading

The US Economy: Caution or Full Speed Ahead?

freedigitalphotos.net by jannoon028

freedigitalphotos.net by jannoon028

Economic recovery from 2008’s Great Recession has been slow and tepid. The economy has not bounced back as it has after previous recessions. GDP growth has been at an anemic 2-3%, compared to the 4-5% GDP often seen during a recovery. It sank during the first quarter of 2014, likely due to the terrible winter the country experienced. Some believe the economy is too dependent on cheap money, that the housing market is too weak, and that wage, income, and job growth has been too low. Continue reading