The big news this week was the dramatic decline in new hires. And this gets to the very heart of this economic recovery.
People who were laid off earlier in the year, combined with new employees has been the hallmark of the economic recovery so far.
And this creates the virtuous cycle that economists like to talk about. New workers power the consumer sector of the economy going forward, and that all powers the economic growth cycle. And so far that's been working pretty well.
We've seen substantial numbers go back to work, about half of the workers laid off because of the pandemic, have now gone back to work.
But this week that engine of new hiring seemed to sputter. There were three major readings, that indicate that businesses have sharply cut back on bringing in new employees.
On Tuesday came the Institute of Supply Managements reading on Manufacturing new hiring, down 9%, and the first decline since the recovery began.
Next came ADP's latest numbers on new hires for November. Down an astounding 24%.
But hold on to your hats, the really bad number came on Friday when the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported a 60% decline in new Non-Farm Payrolls.
Put these all together, and you can see that the Labor Sector of The economy is really hurting.
And eventually, that's bound to spill over to other parts of the economy, like retail sales.