How a company is perceived and presented to Wall Street drives all of this ["Why Stocks Are Surging as Jobs Disappear," usnews.com]. The stockholders demand earnings and only by eliminating the No. 1 cost (people) can this be achieved in down times. Corporate double talkers who preach employees first, HR programs to benefit employees, etc. do so only in good times. When business drops, they drop those same employees like a hot potato. Or...worse...send those jobs overseas for pennies and those jobs are lost forever. There is no turning back. This has happened under any presidency over the past 20 plus years...so it's not a party issue; it's a stock price issue.
Comment by Eric of CA
Right on, Rick [Newman]. It's encouraging to read what I've been saying for months. When I say it, people roll their eyes and change the subject. My guess is that the ranks of the unemployed will swell more than most anticipate, and will shrink very slowly. Managers have discovered that laying off the deadwood who were producing nothing has been a quick, no-brainer way to increase their efficiency and overall productivity. (Didn't they learn that in business school?) How long do you think it will take before they start hiring back the deadwood? When managers decide they can afford to degrade operating efficiency again, just to make it look like they're more important because they have more people on the payroll. It may be a long wait. We'll see how well they've learned their lesson.
Comment by Chuck S. of OR
First of all, in any economic recovery jobs are the last thing to be added. Secondly, in order for jobs to be added, we need to stop losing them. In regards to salaries, wages didn't rise because of unions, they rose because of inflation and unions protected the workers by negotiating wages appropriate to those increases, which begs the question who/what was responsible for inflation? What about the American public being hooked on a large dose of cheap and inexpensive. For example, people complaining about local mom and pop stores closing, meanwhile they're shopping at Wal-Mart. Wal-Mart doesn't put small businesses out of business, people do! Moreover, as long as the American public continues to blame the "other" party for the problems that we face, we will continue to get the same from them, which is incompetence, corruption, and the middle/lower class fighting with each other while the rich keep going to the bank.
Comment by Greg of WI
These market gains are just temporary and more psychological than real. You can't have sustained growth in the market without jobs creation and revenue growth. Companies continue to shed jobs to protect their capital and drive profits through cost cuts rather than increasing revenue.
Comment by Karen of WA
How convenient: blame Bush. He inherited problems, too. As did Clinton, etc. Instead, how about starting decades ago with labor unions' continuously pushing up wages and benefits to the point now American workers are too expensive compared to the rest of the world. I can't stand seeing U.S. jobs being shipped to China and India, but it didn't happen because our companies love those countries. The United States cannot really become strong again without a thriving consumer goods manufacturing base, including our automakers. This is what creates jobs.
Comment by Dan Golus of CA