Friday, November 07, 2008

Unemployment rate up to 6.5%

CNN is reporting this morning that job losses in October were much "worse than expected."

A U.S. government report released this morning that U.S. employers cut payrolls by 240,000 jobs in October. This is much more severe than was expected, and expectations were bad starting out. The government report also showed that September registered the biggest monthly loss in jobs in nearly seven years. The government report showed that the U.S. labor markets are sharply deteriorating.

The Labor Department reported that the national unemployment rate shot up to 6.5 percent from 6.1 percent in September, the highest since March 1994. CNN is reporting that total lost jobs is 1,179,000 for this year.

The good thing is that Barack Obama recognizes that there is no time to wait on the financial crisis and the economy. He is going to be meeting with his economic advisers today, with the idea of developing a strategy. Obama and vice-president-elect Joe Biden are going to meet with 17 members of their transition economic advisory board, which includes investor Warren Buffet, former cabinet officials such as Paul Volker, and executives from Xerox Corp., Time Warner Inc., Google Inc. and the Hyatt hotel company.

Today's meeting will be followed by Barack Obama's first news conference as president-elect, scheduled for 2:30 pm ET. There is some expectation that Barack Obama could announce some key economic cabinet positions for his administration at today's news conference. Rumoured to be among those being considered for the post of treasury secretary are Timothy Geithner, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York; former treasury secretary Lawrence Summers; former Federal Reserve chairman Paul Volcker and Laura Tyson, chair of Bill Clinton's council of economic advisers.

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