NEW YORK -- The Conference Board’s Employment Trends Index (ETI) fell in May, continuing a decline that began in July 2007 and suggesting additional softening in the labor market.
The index fell 0.5 percent in May to 113.7 from 114.3 in April and is down 6 percent since July 2007.
“We forecast further softening in the labor market, a moderate rise in unemployment, and weaker wage growth over the next several quarters,” said Gad Levanon, senior economist at The Conference Board. “Employers will find it easier to recruit and hire, and will be looking at slower growth in compensation costs. Workers will find it harder to get a job, a raise or a bonus -- all of which will further rein in consumer spending.”
Levanon adds that the index has fallen over the last year at rates consistent with those in previous periods of employment decline, such as in 2001.
Non-farm employment peaked in December 2007 and declined each month since then -- a total loss of 324,000 jobs.
For more information, click here.