In January, the U.S. economy added only 113,000 jobs. Most forecasts were for job growth of closer to 200,000, which still would not have been all that impressive.
On the other hand, the unemployment rate dropped slightly, from 6.7 to 6.6 percent.
This has become the familiar pattern — anemic job growth coupled with very small decreases in the unemployment rate. Indeed, the theme of BLS’s “Employment Situation Summary” is “little change.” As in:
[T]he unemployment rate was little changed at 6.6 percent.
In January, 2.6 million persons were marginally attached to the labor force, little changed from a year earlier.
Among the marginally attached, there were 837,000 discouraged workers in January, about unchanged from a year earlier. Discouraged workers are persons not currently looking for work because they believe no jobs are available for them.
And so on, as the poorest excuse in memory for an economic recovery totters on.