“We do not expect substantial further declines in unemployment this year”

As I’ve feared, it looks like a long, slow recovery.  For employment, it hardly looks like a recovery at all.  Even if employmnent (# of jobs) grows by say 100,000 per month, that means no improvement in unemployment rate because population and workforce participation continue to grow. Also note the reference that inflation is NOT what we have to fear now.

Administration advisors Geithner, Orzag, and Romer advise in a Joint Statement:

Because of normal growth in the population and the fact that some workers are likely to reenter the labor force as the economy improves, it typically takes employment growth of somewhat over 100,000 per month to bring the unemployment rate down. Because we do not expect job growth substantially over 100,000 per month over the remainder of the year, we do not expect substantial further declines in unemployment this year. Indeed, the rate may rise slightly over the next few months as some workers return to the labor force, before beginning a steady downward trend. …

As the pace of job creation picks up in 2011 and 2012, there is likely to be greater progress in reducing unemployment. Nonetheless, because of the severe toll the recession has taken on the labor market, the unemployment rate is likely to remain elevated for an extended period. The forecast projects that in the fourth quarter of 2011, the unemployment rate will be 8.9 percent, and that by the fourth quarter of 2012, it will be 7.9 percent.

# Inflation. Because of the high levels of slack in the economy, we expect inflation to remain low and see little risk of substantial increases in inflation. At the same time, inflation expectations appear to be well anchored, and so we do not expect inflation to fall substantially further or turn into outright deflation. We project inflation (on a fourth-quarter-to-fourth-quarter basis, as measured by the GDP price index) of 1.0 percent in 2010, 1.4 percent in 2011, and 1.7 percent in 2012.

via Calculated Risk: Geithner, Orzag, Romer: “We do not expect substantial further declines in unemployment this year”.