What the August Jobs Number Didn’t Tell You

The official jobs report said that the U.S. economy added 173,000 jobs in August. Here is what it didn’t say: at the end of August, there were 698,000 fewer native-born Americans with jobs than there were at the beginning of the month. ZeroHedge reports:

The one chart that matters more than ever…is the following, showing the cumulative addition of foreign-born and native-born workers added to US payrolls according to the BLS since December 2007, i.e., since the start of the recession/Second Great Depression.

domestic vs foreign cumulative

The chart is especially important because what it shows for just the month of August will be enough to provide the Trump – and every other – campaign with enough soundbites and pivot points to last it for weeks on end: namely, that in August a whopping 698,000 native-born Americans lost their job. This drop was offset by 204,000 foreign-born Americans, who got a job in the month of August.

The number netted to a positive 173,000 due, I believe, to seasonal adjustment.

But the punchline: since December 2007, according to the Household Survey, only 790,000 native born American jobs have been added. Contrast that with the 2.1 million foreign-born Americans Ed.: Should be “foreign-born workers”] who have found a job over the same time period…

domestic vs foreign cumulative chart

Here are the BLS numbers, which are as ZeroHedge describes them:


This is a big part of the reason why happy talk about the economy by the likes of Paul Krugman doesn’t fool anyone, and why even Democrats like Bernie Sanders and Joe Biden don’t try to defend the economic record of the Obama administration. And it deserves to be a huge element in the debate over legal immigration.