Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Bad News For US Employment Growth

Bad news for US employment. After decades of growth, overall US industrial capacity is shrinking.

Industrial capacity shrunk by .9 percent from fourth quarter 2008 to 2009. In previous years, IC grew.

4th qtr to 4th qtr:

2009: -.9 percent
2008: 1.1 percent
2007: 2.0 percent
2006: 1.5 percent

Average annual rate, from 1972 to 2009:

1995 to 2009: 2.7 percent
1989 to 1994: 2.3 percent
1980 to 1988: 1.9 percent
1972 to 1979: 3.1 percent

The Federal Reserve defines industrial capacity as "sustainable maximum output – the greatest level of output a plant can maintain within the framework of a realistic work schedule, after factoring in normal downtime and assuming sufficient availability of inputs to operate the capital in place."

Data source:

Industrial capacity definition source:

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