ASA Weekly Index Improves

We have known for sometime that employers have been unwilling to hire permanent workers and instead prefer temporary/contract workers because they are easier to layoff. According to the latest ASA weekly index that trend is continuing. From the ASA:
During the week of Sept. 20–26, 2010, temporary and contract employment rose 1.36%, pushing the index up two points to a value of 100. The last time the weekly index hit 100 was during the week of May 12, 2008.

At a current index value of 100, U.S. staffing employment is 45% higher than the level reported for the first week of the current year and is 25% higher than the same weekly period in 2009.
Click chart for larger image

You really start to wonder how long this can continue. Can companies permanently survive on temp workers? I think it is more of an indication of how cautious corporations are right now. They don't really believe that the recovery is sustainable (ex-government stimulus) and hiring permanent workers would be risky if there is a double-dip. The criminally insane members of the Fed say more money printing will help to solve the unemployment problem. If that is the case why did QE 1 fail? Of course, this is just a screen for debt monetization, but it fools most of the people all the time. If we really wanted to increase jobs the first thing to do would be to reform US trade policy. The current policy of the US practicing free trade while everyone else engages in mercantilism is not sustainable. All of our Asian trading partners end up with dollars and we are left with all of the debts. No doubt the system has worked well for multinationals, but it has been ruinous to the US economy.

Black Swan Insights


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