Jobs Report: Patience and Fortitude Required


This post by Jill Schlesinger originally appeared on CBS' MoneyWatch.com.



The BLS November Employment Report is out and the news is better than expected. 11,000 jobs lost (versus estimates of 100,000) and rate dipped to 10% from 10.2% in October. Recovery, here we come, right? Sort of.

For months, the news on jobs has been as follows: less bad=good. That's OK if you're an economist, but obviously not particularly helpful if you are one of the six people looking to land that one job offering. As MoneyWatch blogger Mark Thoma notes, this has been a brutal decade for private sector jobs.

As I think about the scourge of unemployment in the country, I keep coming back to Patience and Fortitude, the lions that guard the steps to the Main Branch of the New York Public Library.

(CBSNews.com/Gordon Donovan)

The lions began their reign on 42nd Street in 1911 as "Leo Astor and Leo Lenox," after library founders John Jacob Astor and James Lenox. However, during the hardships of the 1930s, New York City Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia renamed them Patience and Fortitude, the qualities he believed would help New Yorkers navigate the perilous Great Depression.

It seems apt to invoke Patience and Fortitude as we (hopefully) emerge from the Great Recession. After all, when the twenty year debt bubble exploded, everyone was going to pay the price. My grandmother, a survivor of the Depression herself, used to say "cheap is expensive" when referring to shoddy goods and services - I would update that by saying "cheap credit is expensive." It will undoubtedly take patience and fortitude to survive the recession and the subsequent recovery.

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(CBS)
Jill Schlesinger is the Editor-at-Large for CBS MoneyWatch.com. Prior to the launch of MoneyWatch, she was the Chief Investment Officer for an independent investment advisory firm. In her infancy, she was an options trader on the Commodities Exchange of New York.
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    Jill Schlesinger, CFP®, is the Emmy-nominated, Business Analyst for CBS News. She covers the economy, markets, investing and anything else with a dollar sign on TV, radio (including her nationally syndicated radio show), the web and her blog, "Jill on Money." Prior to her second career at CBS, Jill spent 14 years as the co-owner and Chief Investment Officer for an independent investment advisory firm. She began her career as a self-employed options trader on the Commodities Exchange of New York, following her graduation from Brown University.