Jobs Numbers for March 2018 were released today, Friday, April 6, 2018. This is the 14th month of jobs reports under Trump. We are still adding jobs, though the number of jobs added fell off a bit in March. We added 103,000 jobs in March 2018.How are we doing compared to the last 5-6 years of the Obama Presidency?
The chart below doesn't only look at number of jobs added over a month period; it looks at the percentage increase in jobs over six month periods. That will help to even out the jobs numbers, which tend to vary quite a bit month to month. (It's very misleading to make any assessments or assumptions based on one month of jobs data.)
On the following chart, each bar represents the % increase in jobs over a 6 month period ending in the designated month. Blue bars represent six month periods during the Obama Presidency; green bars represent six month periods overlapping Obama and Trump Presidencies; red bars represent six month periods during the Trump Presidency.
Here is what job growth has looked like over the past five years when calculated as a percentage increase over any running six month period:
You will have to click on the graph to really see it, but compare the red sticks on the right (job growth under Trump) with the green and blue sticks. Job growth has been slowing slightly since 2015. Job growth is about the same under Trump (blue sticks) as it was during the transition. The last few months have shown an improvement, though still not as strong as the 2013 thru 2016 time period (blue sticks).
What does the future hold for job growth under Trump?
We really don't know. We know that job growth is usually better under Democratic administrations, but there's nothing predictive there. Basically, though, Trump crows about job growth... but, compared to the last years of the Obama administration, it really isn't that special (so far) even though over 300,000 jobs were added in February.
I will repeat from last month that it is a good thing for the people of the country that we are still adding jobs considering the uncertainty and absurdity of many of the President's policies. Please also be aware that, while tax cuts may cause a short term increase in the number of jobs, they often lead to a recession with loss of jobs a few years down the line. They also often lead to inflation-adjusted wage erosion. We also don't know the impact of the tariffs which have been discussed in the last few weeks. Large tariffs, particularly when enacted with a cudgel vs. a scapel, tend to lead to recession and job loss.