Jul 22, 2004

Job numbers up -- But will engineers-turned-waiters save the day?

My years covering Vietnam's economy today made me sick of equating jobs and manufacturing output with a successful economy. When these two indicators started being used in recent months as evidence of America's upturn, that queezy feeling returned. At least the Times is pointing out Morgan Stanley's economist's observation, that a million new Starbucks baristas do not a revived economy make. http://www.nytimes.com/2004/07/22/opinion/22roac.html?pagewanted=print&position=

Even with that possible rise in minimum wage, from $5.15 per hour to $7.15. Although, at 40 hours a week per month, a worker could in fact earn enough for a month of health care coverage, and still have enough for a cup of coffee every day (or a Snapple).

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