Today, Wells Fargo released a new Labor Market Index. It includes six key labor variables and, at first blush, looks very interesting. Next week, they will publish the statistical backup for this index, and I look forward to studying it. Hopefully, the media and the markets can be liberated from the over-hyped “jobs report.”
In the meantime, there is one little noticed piece of jobs data that I have always found interesting, i.e., the number of unemployed for every job opening. It has now fallen to only to 2.9, which is the lowest since 2003. I have no doubt the job market is improving, but it is improving slower than the economy is improving. While this is characteristic of recoveries from a financial crisis (as opposed to recoveries from ordinary recessions), this is still unacceptably slow.
I applaud Wells Fargo for this new step forward and look forward to studying it.