My take on the St. Lous economy:
- Although the BLS is underestimating it, St. Louis payroll employment is growing too slowly to recover the jobs lost during the recession anytime soon. In fact, as with national employment, it might not even be keeping up with population growth.
- The St. Louis unemployment rate has fallen by about 1.6 percentage points since June 2011. Almost 24 thousand fewer people are unemployed, but most of this did not result in more employment. The labor force shrank by 17.1 thousand while employment rose by only 6.6 thousand. That is bad news.
- Since January of this year, the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell by 0.4 percentage points. Although the number of unemployed fell by 6.2 thousand, the labor force shrank by even more (9.2 thousand). Thus, the number of employed people fell. That is bad news.