Nada! Not a single job was added to the economy in August, the Labor Department said Friday. That's the first time in 11 months that the United States did not show a net increase in jobs.
The unemployment rate remained at 9.1 percent, with 14 million Americans out of work. Economists didn't expect great news from today's jobs report but thought it would show a gain of at least 60,000 jobs. The Labor Department also revised July's numbers to 85,000 jobs. It previously reported 117,000 had been added.
The paralyzed labor market underscores concerns that a second recession may be under way. It shows that businesses lack confidence and have put hiring on hold. It spooks investors and injects fear everywhere, including the stock market.
While that may be horrible news for the economy, it's actually good for mortgage rates.
Many of my sources say mortgage rates will continue to fall or remain at historically low levels until the job market improves. Well, it's not improving. If anything, it has gotten worse.
The unemployed seem to have lost hope they'll be able find work again. Of the 14 million people without a job, about 6 million have been unemployed for more than six months.