Friday, March 7, 2008

Economy Sheds Employment Numbers

For the very few left in the back seat saying Are we there yet? regarding a recession, this morning the government released a bleak jobs report. In the Times' report, Economy lost 63,000 Jobs in February, an economist said, "I haven't seen a job report this recessionary since the last recession."
    The private sector lost 101,000 jobs last month, the biggest drop-off in five years. Retail, construction and factory jobs were hit hardest.

    ...Wages grew more slowly, further depressing the outlook for consumer spending over the next few months. Among rank-and-file workers — more than 80 percent of the work force — average pay grew just 0.3 percent to $17.20 an hour. Wages are effectively running flat when adjusted for inflation.

News travels fast. The dollar has already dropped against the Euro even more, creeping to $1.5459 per euro.

For people in the restaurant biz, it's a mixed bag. I was at Gotham Bar & Grill for lunch the other day (business meeting, not on my weakened dime), and it was dead. I'm sure, however, they are busy for dinner. The Chinatown hand pulled noodle shop under the Manhattan Bridge, however, was packed for lunch yesterday. Uniqlo, the Japanese clothing retaliler on Broadway, was dead. The streets of Lower Manhattan? Filled with European tourists. I'd be interested to see how this will pan out in the city. The true test will be how long the wait is tonight at Lombardi's. I'll keep you posted.

5 comments:

mfaorbust said...

I was at a swank bar last night (also not on my pitiful dime), and I was wondering why I was only hearing European accents... Makes so much sense now!

PiggyBankBlues said...

yep! and thank god, because the economy of US tourist destinations would suffer even more...

Jay said...

I walked down Broadway from Times Square to City Hall, and noticed a lot more vacant storefronts than I saw a month ago. The stretch between Houston and Canal had a couple new vacancies on each block.

I also noticed a lot of "Office Space for Lease" signs, something that I haven't seen in years.

Scary thing is, I think it's only beginning.

PiggyBankBlues said...

jay-

i'm noticing the empty storefronts as well. part of it might be the flattening out of the development boom, but it's still different than usual. and last night there was no wait at lombardi's...

btw, welcome to pbb!

Ms. M&P said...

I'm definitely in the backseat asking, but I really just want validation that we've arrived since so many people seem to be denying that we're at the recession. It's weird because I'm not personally stressed out about it (aside from mild heart palpitations everytime I see my 401k drop), but I worry about people struggling to make ends meet. As if things aren't bad enough for some people, now more economic problems will pile on.