Some ugly data points, courtesy of David Rosenberg of Gluskin Sheff, im anticipation of Friday’s NFP release:

Employment-to-Population Ratio: Men (25-54 Years)

Labour Force Participation Rate: Men (25-54 Years)

Category: Employment

Please use the comments to demonstrate your own ignorance, unfamiliarity with empirical data and lack of respect for scientific knowledge. Be sure to create straw men and argue against things I have neither said nor implied. If you could repeat previously discredited memes or steer the conversation into irrelevant, off topic discussions, it would be appreciated. Lastly, kindly forgo all civility in your discourse . . . you are, after all, anonymous.

39 Responses to “Employment for Adult Males is at Record Lows”

  1. TakBak04 says:

    Our Trade Policy isn’t Helping…….
    ——————————————-
    February 25, 2010
    Whirlpool: Taking Tax Dollars, Taking Jobs

    It can barely get greedier than this: We’re in tough economic times, so Whirlpool receives $19 million in taxpayer funds to create jobs. Then it turns around and announces it will shutter its Evansville, Indiana refrigerator plant and displace the 1,100 workers there. Disgusting.

    And where, you might ask, will those jobs go? They’ll follow so many other lost family-supporting jobs on the NAFTA train to Mexico.

    But workers are hoping to make the planned Evansville closing a turning point in the battle for American manufacturing, and are fighting to keep the plant open. The president of the national AFL-CIO, Richard Trumka, is scheduled to speak tomorrow at a major rally to keep plant open. Many hundreds are expected to join the demonstrations from across the region and the country.

    The union representing the Whirlpool workers, IUE-CWA Local 808, is fighting fiercely. Financial Secretary of Local 808, Barbara Reich, lays it bare on evening news of the local Fox affiliate:

    We need to bring to the attention of the American public when a so-called – in my opinion – American company gets American tax dollars, $19 million American tax dollars to create jobs, then they should not be taking existing American jobs to Mexico or China… We need those jobs right here in this community.

    Sister Reich is right. It’s a long shot that the plant will stay open, but workers are rallying to a higher cause. Under the influence of unfair NAFTA/WTO-style trade policies, manufacturing job loss has hobbled the country’s economic prospects. Working people in Evansville are fighting not just to keep the plant open, but also to change the policies of “taking these jobs to other countries.”
    http://citizen.typepad.com/eyesontrade/2010/02/letters-to-the-editor-are-flooding-the-local-papers-highlighting-the-devastating-impact-the-closure-will-have-on-the-entire.html

  2. jpm says:

    His denominators are total populations, not male populations?

  3. Marcus Aurelius says:

    Unemployed men. Unemployed young men. When economic pressures unbalance our social order, things are gonna’ get nasty. To paraphrase George Thorogood: They all worried ’bout the black swan moment, when they should be worried ’bout the Genghis Khan moment.

  4. beaufou says:

    Along the same line, Paul Otellini, the chief executive of Intel announces he’s building a new plant in China because corporations are overtaxed in the US.
    Obviously, douche bag extraordinaire, Tom Friedman agrees.
    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/03/opinion/03friedman.html?hp

  5. scepticus says:

    It would be interesting to see the results for women of the same age range plotted on the same chart.

    Sword vs Spindle.

  6. Mannwich says:

    There you go, beaufou. I hope that young historian f411 takes note. Investing more in education in this country when corporations can just pay much less by sending those jobs overseas. Sounds like a great idea for our youngsters to bury themselves in debt for that promise……..

  7. cognos says:

    The jobs sent overseas are mainly jobs we dont want.

    The problem for middle-american manufacturing jobs is a product of the union structure (pensions, pay scale that moves up with time, ZERO firings (?!?)… combined with company paid healthcare benefits.

    How can middle-class workers compete here… versus other countries where healthcare is nationalized?

    (Not to mention, the dumb-ass unions are paying 30-50% of compensation in pension and healthcare. Why? No one wants that (except the oldest legacy employees… and even they would rather have cash $$$).

    Sad, simple problems.

  8. Mannwich says:

    @cognos: No, they’re jobs YOU don’t want. There. Fixed it for you.

  9. alfred e says:

    @cognos: What planet are you from anyway?

    The thread was not a union bashing, cost structure one. Although we could go on ad infinitum about how govs ruin US corp cost structures not unions.

    The point was the company took $19 million of taxpayer dollars to create jobs and then closed its biggest US plant.

    How do you justify that AH?

  10. Its Me says:

    Clearly the US decline in manufacturing and the decline in male employment levels are linked.

    The question is what is causing the decline and how can it be prevented. I don’t think it was NAFTA as the chart shows employment growth during the Clinton years when NAFTA was instituted. Its investing and Asia not Mexico.

    I think two things need to be done:
    1) Capital depreciation rates and/or corporate tax rates need to moved to better favor capital investing.
    2) The Chinese Yuan needs to be decoupled as fixed and allowed to float against the dollar.

  11. dead hobo says:

    Reuters says the economy is improving because fewer jobs disappeared last month than before. Getting worse at a slower rate is still the new good. The oldies are still the goodies. Maybe green shoots will come back in the Spring.

  12. Lugnut says:

    ^^^There was a reduction in the monthly decrease of green shoots form last month, so thats a win!

  13. rktbrkr says:

    Marcus…best played really loud
    Ev’rywhere I hear the sound of marching, charging feet, boy
    ‘Cause summer’s here and the time is right for fighting in the street, boy
    But what can a poor boy do
    Except to sing for a rock ‘n’ roll band
    ‘Cause in sleepy London town
    There’s just no place for a street fighting man
    No

    Hey! Think the time is right for a palace revolution
    ‘Cause where I live the game to play is compromise solution
    Well, then what can a poor boy do
    Except to sing for a rock ‘n’ roll band
    ‘Cause in sleepy London town
    There’s just no place for a street fighting man
    No

    Hey! Said my name is called disturbance
    I’ll shout and scream, I’ll kill the king, I’ll rail at all his servants
    Well, what can a poor boy do
    Except to sing for a rock ‘n’ roll band
    ‘Cause in sleepy London town
    There’s just no place for a street fighting man
    No

  14. David Merkel says:

    This is not just an economic problem, it is a cultural problem.

  15. Mannwich says:

    @rktbrker: That’s one’s been one of my favorites recently to play while working out!

  16. Mannwich says:

    That’s been my mantra all along, DM.

  17. NiNM says:

    How a comparison of unemployment for women?

  18. noilifcram says:

    Those charts don’t mean much if we don’t have the corresponding ones for women. This clearly depicts the structural change that happened as women took their place in the workforce. It’s no surprise some men ended up out of work as the number of women hitting the job market was greater than the number of jobs created in that period.

    Still a very interesting chart if you’re a masculinist who thinks men are oppressed :D

  19. Invictus says:

    Not entirely sure why this should come as a surprise, given the aging of the boomer population. In fact, if one goes to the BLS website — as I did — and pulls up the data for the 55+ cohort, it tells a far different story (upward sloping since 1994), as one would expect. Gotta call BS on this one — I believe this has more to do with demographics than it does economics.

  20. spencerh says:

    How do you really fix the race to the bottom problem in a world with global competition? What we have is “Globalization of Capital” without attendant labor mobility, universal human rights protections, universal worker protections, or universal environmental standards. A world where non-diverse, non-liberal democracies are the places where some of the cheapest labor is (it’s easy to go from a homogeneous, non-liberal country to a heterogeneous, liberal one – the former constrains you, the latter is *giving* you additional freedom and diversity the norm.)

    So, the typical prescriptions:

    1) Globalization solution: “Just let it happen. There’s no way to stop it, and it will /eventually/ even out.” Problem: Forces a race to the bottom. First, workers are sent to countries without the above listed protections. Eventually, the developed countries follow suit and we wind up with no protections anywhere. We’re back to a horrible Mercantilist world where workers are little better than pack animals. Even if this solution eventually fixes it self (it could), how long does it take? What about the suffering in the interim? We should accept a world like this even after we realize how awful it is? After the creation and implementation of good labor standards, the UDHR, etc. We should go back to a world before these things existed?

    2) Protectionist solution: [One or more of the following] “Implement tariffs. Don’t trade with countries who are bad actors. Only allow companies who hire local workers.” Much more humane, but in a global marketplace, how do you compete with countries who can afford to pay their workers pennies on the dollar? You don’t. You’re the wonderful country treating your workers well while your companies go bankrupt because their brutal Mercantilist competitors overseas pump out 10 times the output while treating their workers like dogs. Living standards in your own country go way down since there’s so much less income from exports. Whoops.

    3) Education solution: “Educate workers until their brains fall out. We’ll create a knowledge/service economy! Since our people are so much better educated and entrepreneurial, we’ll always be one step ahead!” Very noble, but guess what? Our competitors can institute things like Universal Higher Education, which we’re unwilling to do because socialized anything makes some Friedman/Hayek/Rothbard brainwashed politicians and their constituents brains melt. Even if we could fix this, we’ve got another problem. Our competitors can do the same thing! A wash, at best.

    For completeness, I should include the Imperialist solution. Invade, plunder, and all that old pirate-style stuff. That can work for a while, but I think we all know how that eventually turns out.

    My solution? Create technology that can infinitely replicate/create anything so that we enter a world of superabundance. Then all those problems go away. See you in a century!

  21. tagyoureit says:

    Labor force participation 1950-1998.

    http://www.bls.gov/opub/mlr/1999/12/art1full.pdf

    Women: 25-34 1950: 34 1998: 76
    Men: 25-34 1950: 96 1998: 93

    W35-44 1950: 39 1998: 77
    M35-44 1950: 98 1998: 93

    If more men then women are losing jobs, it’s probably because the men were earning higher median wages.

  22. tagyoureit says:

    http://www.census.gov/hhes/www/income/histinc/p05AR.xls

    2008
    Median Income, 15+
    105,428,000 Men $33,161
    106,403,000 Women $20,867

    $12,294 savings just waiting to be taken. With roughly equal qualifications & performance, who says on the payroll?

    Number of women with income first exceeded men in 1979:
    Men: 78,129,000
    Women: 79,921,000

  23. ChrisS says:

    All this shows me is that the U.S. has gotten on board copying its international competitors for low-cost jobs by employing children. Men are losing out to children who are willing to work for low cost rewards, like having their chains removed at the end of the 15 hour workday.

  24. torrie-amos says:

    this has been going on awhile

    what is the path for the middle class NOW

    the facts are we had one and gave it away, and now you couple in a few things like no more cheap energy, and the cheap labor countries are teching up at the top rather than a slow climb, thus, there efficiencies go from none to max in a decade

    the only thing that can change it is higher energy, thus, it will make more sense to mfg locally once worlwide wages are balanced, that’s only a 50 year chart, lol

    corporations in dowturns always always always clean out high dollar and put in cheaper cogs, this time those high dollar folks have nowhere to go cause everyone is doing the same thing at the same time

  25. A more detailed graph on 25-54 male including the inactivity rate and unemployed/population here:

    http://guerby.org/blog/index.php/2010/01/31/211-larry-summers-lit-mon-blog

    Thanks Barry to have shown than one in five prime aged men is out of a job in the USA right now. If you add part time (current rate is at its highest mesured according to BLS) it’s one in four.

  26. Paul Anthony Kelly says:

    The current low unemployment figures is naturally expected as part of the 80 year New Economy Cycle (ref. Harry Dent). There are 4 stages: 1. Innovation 2. Growth Boom 3. shakeout 4. maturity boom

    Our Growth boom just ended around early 2008. this is when the radical new innovations move mainstream (computers, internet, etc.). [ as an aside the automobile industry experienced this . Their Growth boom led them to over 100 auto makers around 1917.]

    Then we get the shakeout. This is when the industry leaders emerge and the also rans fall by the side. This is where we are at right now. Expect this downtrend in our economy to keep up until 2014??? The worst of our unemployment should occur between mid 2010-2011 – possibly extend 2013 or 14.

    Finally the maturity boom. This is like it happened 42-68. Think of it like the “happy days” of the 50s. this is when the technological progress moves into mainstream economy, benefiting every day people and workers much more than the rich and innovative. During this period work will be abundant, the economy is less volatile.

  27. tagyoureit says:

    Plotz worthy headline: “Don’t send your kid to college”. Is it because degree ≠ ticket to high paying job? Or is it because projected job growth is mostly in jobs that don’t need a college degree (e.g. home “health” aid)?

    Spencerh, many brains need to fall out if you really want someone to create gray-goo, super abundance machines! We should invent the mulitvac first, so we can ask The Last Question. The imperialist solution has worked for millenia (not that it makes it morally acceptable). We’re doing it now until we can ‘outsource’ global security (of our interests) to foreign nationals.

    As far as the future of the American middle class is concerned, I’m not even sure who counts as middle class these days. What standard of living is middle? Is it still a larger than your neighbors single family home in a soothing suburban setting with ample SUV parking near mass transit hubs, top schools, public parks and a night life? That sounds like upper-middle class living to me, to which many, many Americans strive.

    Declining lower-middle class incomes are placing those, soon to be over-educated and heavily indebted for their income level people, squarely into the working class standard. The new working class will have lower incomes in general which will prevent the jump to what is now the upper-middle class standard. Lower-middle families took a shot, via debt, at the upper-middle standard and failed. Upper-class & those upper-middle class employers have even more power as far as income for their workers is concerned, they need only continue to point the finger at goverment and foreigners to justify lower pay. Working ‘extra hard’ will only move you within your class. It takes an individual stroke of brilliance to move up a class. But, that is certainly not new.

  28. budhak0n says:

    No dopes. Eventually the Boomers will retire or die off, and we’ll finally have normal jobs.

    Duh.

  29. budhak0n says:

    And then we’ll terrorize them with their Annuity payments and how we make Jane Fonda look like Golda Meier when we send them silly letters about how AARP WILL SAVE THE WORLD!

  30. bocon007 says:

    Globalization: a means without an end.

  31. Jojo says:

    Why the cut-off at age 54? Is 54 considered to be the effective end of employability in America?

    In any case, job losses through increasing productivity, outsourcing and automation will continue to decimate employment in many 1st world countries. Population needs to be reduced across the board or the number of unemployed will eventually overwhelm the employed.

    OTOH, we need more workers paying taxes to pay for social services and supporting people living longer.

    We are between the proverbial rock and a hard place.

  32. Pat G. says:

    “in anticipation of Friday’s NFP release:”

    The talking heads are already plying the grease to the NFP number by comparing February’s weather to the blizzard of 1996 and saying the number could be 175-225K worse than expected. Give me a break!! February was one month. The blizzard of 1996 covered several months.

  33. budhak0n says:

    Or Maybe just maybe “Guys” are either the one now with the kids OR are more likely to not participate in a fixed game.

    For instance, how many morons do you see playing the Money Wheel at the local fair? Well educated males eventually figure out that what they are doing is supplementing YOUR income, not their own.

    You should consider yourself lucky that they aren’t asking for you to return your paychecks. Because it’s obvious by your behavior of the past few years, you haven’t earned them.

    Look no further than the great Robert Nardelli for details on why Men think you’re all full of sheet.

  34. willid3 says:

    i really wonder who is it that is competing that causes the need for the race to the bottom to happen. unless your making and selling some thing that you trade with the US, maybe. but not always. if you make a 10 cent item in China, whats the cost shipping it 3000-4000 miles doing to the cost of it? i doubt it makes it cheaper then does it? and even if it was a 20k product, the cost of shipping it makes it cost much more than making it here. and with the price of oil going up that cost will keep going up.

    so just who is competing with the rest of the world?
    i think its only the US employees.
    and we get no benefit from it.

    the only way US companies are competing and ‘needing’ that lower cost labor costs us to compete with another US company.
    part of the causes for the GR was out of control spending that was supported with out of control lending that was caused by collapsing incomes of US citizens.
    how helpful was that?

  35. TakBak04 says:

    Invictus Says:
    March 3rd, 2010 at 1:36 pm

    Not entirely sure why this should come as a surprise, given the aging of the boomer population. In fact, if one goes to the BLS website — as I did — and pulls up the data for the 55+ cohort, it tells a far different story (upward sloping since 1994), as one would expect. Gotta call BS on this one — I believe this has more to do with demographics than it does economics.

    ———

    Your Post poses some VERY INTERESTING Solutions………Going Forward…

    Can’t agree with all…(but, you knew that) …but your post is a very worthy read for us QUESTIONING.

    THANKS!

  36. TakBak04 says:

    spencerh Says:
    March 3rd, 2010 at 1:49 pm

    How do you really fix the race to the bottom problem in a world with global competition? What we have is “Globalization of Capital” without attendant labor mobility, universal human rights protections, universal worker protections, or universal environmental standards. A world where non-diverse, non-liberal democracies are the places where some of the cheapest labor is (it’s easy to go from a homogeneous, non-liberal country to a heterogeneous, liberal one – the former constrains you, the latter is *giving* you additional freedom and diversity the norm.)

    =============

    I don’t know how we fix it…except to keep fighting against it…and trying to “Push Back!” ????

  37. Steve Barry says:

    Even scarier is that Chinese and Indian students study twice as much as the average American and will work much cheaper. Tough to compete with that.

  38. foxmuldar says:

    I got my pay stub for last weeks three day work. When I got home I noticed the Gross was the same but the Net had jumped some. I compared the pay stub to the previous weeks stub and noticed that instead of $18.51 for my medical deduction that is taken out each week, only $.20 cents was taken out of last weeks pay. WTF? Now I’ll have to call work tomorrow and let them know somebody fucked up.

    Obama keeps talking about how insurance costs are rising, and suddenly mine drops in a big way. Or perhaps the company has dropped my coverage and hasn’t told us about it yet.

    Actually I think the woman that makes up the pay stubs screwed up. But she is still working a full week while the guys at the plant are all on a three day shift except for the bosses and engineers. I guess this weeks pay will see a big raise in the cost of my health insurance. Geez.

  39. ben22 says:

    Well, this is interesting, a textbook on Socionomics was written in 1985 that made claim that in bear markets women make major gains in the workforce. Lots of other explanations or solutions found in these posts but I didn’t see a mention of this.