Bernanke Talks Up The Jobs Market

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke is giving a speech at the National Association for Business Economics Annual Conference in Washington, D.C. titled simply “Recent Developments in the Labor Market.”  Mr. Bernanke is talking about some of the positive signs on the jobs front recently.

While Bernanke is talking up monthly payroll gains and a notable decline in the unemployment rate, he cautions that some key questions are unresolved.  He also cautions that the better jobs numbers seem somewhat out of sync with the overall pace of economic expansion.

Bernanke specifically noted, “Importantly, despite the recent improvement, the job market remains far from normal; for example, the number of people working and total hours worked are still significantly below pre-crisis peaks, while the unemployment rate remains well above what most economists judge to be its long-run sustainable level.  Of particular concern is the large number of people who have been unemployed for more than six months.”

The full speech can be accessed here from the Federal Reserve.