No hard times?
New York--The Bureau of Labor Statistics announced April
4 that nonfarm payroll employment in the U.S. fell by 108,000 in March. It also
revised its estimate of February’s job loss to a whopping 357,000. Since the
recession officially began in March 2001, there has been a net loss of 2.1
million jobs. More than one-fifth of the total, 465,000 jobs, have been
eliminated during the past two months alone.
Largely for this reason, on March 7--the same day that
the February job loss figures were reported--the Business Cycle Dating Committee
of the National Bureau of Economic Research declared that it was too early to
determine whether the recession has ended. The committee’s determinations are
accepted as official by the U.S. government.
If the committee eventually does determine that the
economy was still in recession in March, this recession will be the longest one,
by far, since the Great Depression of the 1930s. Events like these disclose
that, although the military power of the U.S. is unrivaled in world history, it
lacks the power to transcend the recurrent crises of capitalist production.
Published by News and Letters Committees