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updated: 2016-11-06
2002 February
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2002 February

  "Dicendum quod ad hoc quod aliquod bellum sit justum, tria requiruntur.   Primo quindem, auctoritas principis, cujus mandato bellum est gerendum...   Secundo, requiritur causa justa...   Tertio, requiritur ut sit intentio bellantium recta." --- Thomas Aquinas _Summa Theologiae_ 1273  




Peter G. Gosselin _Los Angeles Times_ pp C1 & C3
Jobs Report Adds to Hope of Recovery
"the January unemployment rate slipped to 5.6% &...   employers shed jobs at the slowest pace in 5 months...   the jobless decline was accompanied by an inexplicably large plunge in the size of America's labor force, & by figures showing a near-record number of jobless workers have run out of unemployment benefits...   The labor force suddenly shrank in January by 924K people, the biggest decline since the gov't started keeping records in 1948...
The employment total for adult women dropped by 103K in January while the unemployment fell by more than 320K, according to [labor] department statistics.   The combination suggests women are leaving the labor force in droves, said Lawrence Mishel, vice president of the Economic Policy Institute in Washington...
"joblessness is still taking a nasty toll by leaving those who lose their jobs out of work for inordinate periods.   Other Labor Department figures show that the average amount of time that someone remains jobless is growing, leaving many workers without unemployment benefits...
Average hourly earnings of production & non-supervisory workers, who make up about 80% of the nation's work force, remained steady at $14.59, the first time they have not increased in a year.   Average weekly earnings declined $1.50."

Jeannine Aversa _AP_/_San Diego Union-Tribune_ pg C1
Jobless rate declines as many give up search
"The jobless rate dipped to 5.6%, a 0.2-percentage-point decrease from December, the Labor Department reported yesterday.   But that occurred because the labor force shrank by 924K -- not because employment went up.   As a result, the gov't's official unemployment figure, which counts only those actively looking for jobs, fell to 7.9M in January...
[Carl Tannenbaum, chief economist at LaSalle Bank/ABN AMRO said] 'Companies are not going to commit to adding workers until their bottom lines stabilize.'"

Ed Garsten _AP_ _San Diego Union-Tribune_ pg C2
Sales drop in January at GM, Ford, Chrysler

_LATimes_ pg C2 (citing _Bloomberg News_)
Silicon Valley Sees Rise in $1M Home Sales

Tom Brown _LATimes_ pg C3
Car Makers See January Sales in US Skid by 5.2%

_LATimes_ pg C3 (citing _Bloomberg News_)
Lear to Cut Jobs, Shut Factories to Reduce Costs


Dawn Gilbertson _Arizona Republic_
Slump forces workers to take step down job ladder
"As the parade of corporate cut-backs continues, laid-off professionals frustrated by the airtight job market are increasingly considering jobs they would have turned up their noses at a year ago.   Call them overqualified, under-employed or downwardly mobile.   They're job hunters who are taking a huge step down the career ladder, at least temporarily, because they can no longer hold out for a job like the one they lost.   They need a pay-check or benefits - now...   No employment statistics track the trading-down trend...   Nearly 1M people nationwide gave up their job searches in January, apparently discouraged by the prospects."

David Smith _The Sunday Times_ pg 3.4
Productivity sent packing
"A week ago last Friday, expectations of flat or falling 4th-quarter gross domestic product in Britain were confounded by figures showing 0.2% growth.   On Wednesday the American numbers also showed 0.2% growth.   Confusingly, our 0.2% was a lot better than theirs.   America presents its quarterly numbers at an annualised rate, while ours are unvarnished.   Expressed in the American way, our 4th-quarter growth would have been a shade over 0.8%."

David Smith _The Sunday Times_ pg 3.4
Productivity sent packing
"Britain is still behind its rivals...
America 139
France 115
Germany 107
Britain 100
(output per person employed [index numbers]) & heading in the wrong direction...   Output per hour worked (% annual growth) [Britain showed falling from about 2.4% for 1979-1989, falling slightly to about 2.3% for 1989-1995, then steeply falling off to about 1.4% for 1995-1999]."

David Smith _The Sunday Times_ pg 3.4
Productivity sent packing
"The latest figures, an update of an exercise by Mary O'Mahoney 3 years ago, show that American workers are 39% more productive than ours, French workers 15% & German workers 7%.   On an hourly basis (Britons & Americans work longer hours than the rest), America is 26% ahead, France 25% & Germany 11%...   On an hourly basis, German workers in the market economy are 19% more productive, those in France 22% & those in America 39%.   We are ahead only in mining, a sector in decline, and, perhaps surprisingly, public services...   Skill levels [in Britain & America] are similar, although a little behind France & Germany.   Under-investment provides a more telling explanation.   No matter how we measure capital -- plant, machinery, computers -- British workers have less of it than their counter-parts elsewhere...   Perhaps the most sobering aspect of the National Institute's report is its study of the great IT boom of the 2nd half of the 1990s.   America's productivity growty in that period was double that of the 1980s.   Britain's halved.   So did France's, but it started from a much stronger position...   Productivity has risen just 1.3% in the past 12 months; in manufacturing it has fallen 0.7%."


Stephanie Armour _USA Today_
Laid-Off Workers Change Careers

"More than a third of employees laid off from jobs in such industries as banking, pharmaceuticals and chemicals are moving to careers in other sectors, according to a 2001 study by Jacksonville, FL-based career management consulting firm Manchester.   In banking, 65% of down-sized workers are going to other industries, "

_SF Business Times_
CEO departures nudge up in January
"The chief executive's office saw more turnover in the start of the year, as CEO departures increased nearly 20% to the second highest level in 7 months, according to out-placement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas Inc.   It measured 72 CEO changes in January, up 19% from the 58 announced in December, the firm said today.   The January increase follows two consecutive months of declines and is second only to October (80 CEO changes) in terms of departures during the last 7 months.   January was lower by 39% than January 2001, when Challenger tracked 119 departures.   The firm has reported 2,376 CEO departures since 1999 August, when it began tracking this category.   More experienced chief executives vacated their posts during the month as the average tenure of departing CEOs in January increased to 7.8 years, up from 6.5 years in December and 6.3 years in November.   January tenure marks the highest level since 2000 June, when the CEOs spent an average of 12.7 years at their post.   Continued volatility in the financial and technology sectors was evidenced by the fact that they led all other sectors in CEO departures with 13 and 12, respectively.   The service sector, however, saw the biggest increase in CEO turn-over.   Departures in this sector rose by 83% to 11 from 6 in December."

_University of Tennessee Faculty Senate_
Contingent Employment at UTK

The routine hiring of contingent faculty without discussion or faculty involvement poses a series of challenges to the maintenance of quality higher education...   The overuse of contingent faculty not only negatively affects the educational enterprise, but it also undermines the tenure system itself, leaving academic freedom vulnerable to manipulation and suppression."

Shannon Tan _San Diego Union-Tribune_ pg E9
Make the connection: Building strong contacts often uncovers 'hidden' jobs
"About 18% of workers say it is likely they will be laid off or fired, up from 11% in 1999, according to a recent "Mood of the American Work-force" survey conducted by Harris Interactive & Spherion Corp. Research shows that about 65% of jobs are found through networking.   Most professional, executive & managerial positions are not advertised, so mass-mailing resumes often leads to heart-break.   A human resources 'professional is usually inundated with unsolicited candidates', said Marilyn Durant, president of the Human Resource Association of Broward County in Florida."


Brian Sullivan _ComputerWorld_
Bush plan cuts 2 IT grant programs to pay for terrorism fight
"The Technology Opportunity Program (TOP) & the Community Technology Centers Program (CTCP) would be cut, administration officials said, because of increased military spending brought on by the September 11 terrorism attacks in the US Officials also said they feel that the TOP program has met its goals."


_Sacramento Business Journal_
Loyalty pays off as short-timers get the ax
"Challenger Job Market Index released Wednesday which shows that the average tenure among the discharged in 2001 plummeted to a record low of 4.8 years from 9.8 years in 1999, when the economy was still flying high...   On average in 2001, 26% of those discharged were employed fewer than 24 months, according to the report.   That is significantly higher than any other year tracked by the Challenger firm since 1986.   It is 50% higher than the previous record of 17% in 2000. nbsp;In 1999, only 13% of those discharged had fewer than 2 years with their former employer."


Jeannine Averse _AP_/_San Diego Union-Tribune_ pg C2
Worker output gains even as pay-rolls falter
"The Labor Department reported yesterday that productivity -- the amount of output per hour of work -- increased at an annual rate of 3.5% in the October-December quarter, up from a 1.1 rate in the previous quarter...   Businesses responded to slumping sales by sharply cutting back on their pay-rolls...   Workers' hours in the 4th quarter fell at a 3.7% rate -- the biggest [sic] drop since the 1st quarter of 1991 -- & out-put declined at a 0.4% rate.   Job losses averaged 311K for the final 3 months of last year...   For all of 2001, productivity rose 1.8%, the weakest showing since 1995, & a deceleration from the 3.3% increase posted in 2000...   In comparison, during the country's most recent recessions, productivity rose 1.2% in 1991 & fell 0.6% in 1982...   Unit labor costs actually fell at an annual rate of 1.1%, after rising at a rate of 2.6% in the 3rd quarter.   But for all of 2001, unit labor costs rose 3.9%, the biggest gain since 1990.   In 2000, these costs increased 3.1%."

Don Bauder _San Diego Union-Tribune_ pg C2
Rams' stadium a case study in highway robbery
"Boston's new, $325M stadium has been privately financed -- indeed, it's considered the largest privately financed construction project in the history of New England.   Patriots owner Robert Kraft boasted 2 years ago that it was 'the 1st fully privately financed stadium in the country', although there have been others, & decades ago -- when capitalism was in full flower -- all pro sports stadiums & ball-parks were privately financed...   St. Louis... later went ahead & built a $300M facility completely financed by the city, county & state.   When the National Football League wouldn't give St. Louis an expansion franchise, it raised $80M in private funds to woo another team -- eventually paying $28M to Anaheim to get the LA Rams out of their lease, & shelling out $37M to the NFL...   indemnified the league for $12.5M in lost TV revenue...   the team got substantially all the revenue & the city got crumbs...   Local & state politicians, burned once, are now talking of spending public money on education & health care, not pro sports subsidies...   From the time [Kraft] took over the team [the New England Patriots] in the early 1990s, he lobbied Massachusetts politicians for largess.   It didn't work...   After several bond issues failed to pass, Kraft decided to finance the stadium privately, with the gov't providing the infrastructure."

Margaret Quan _Electronic Engineering Times_
EE Grads Face Grim Job Market


2002-02-07 16:25PST (19:25EST) (2002-02-08 00:25GMT)
Elizabeth Blakey _eCommerce Times_
Dot-Com Lay-Offs Hit Record High in January
"December and January combined for 275,921 job cuts overall, the largest 2-month total since Challenger began its monthly reporting in 1993...   E-commerce and tech lay-offs continue to mount, hitting a record number of 44,851 for the month of January, according to a report released by Challenger, Gray & Christmas...   lay-offs in the combined e-commerce , computer and telecommunications sectors accounted for nearly a third of the 142,208 jobs lost in January.   E-commerce alone saw 11,887 lay-offs in the month.   The January totals surpassed the previous record number of lay-offs -- 133,713 in December -- by more than 6%, the firm said."

2002-02-08 04:00PST (07:00EST) (12:00GMT)
Rachel Konrad _CNET_/_ZD Net_
Massive lay-offs leave tech workers trying to move to survival jobs
"A year ago, JCC was enthusiastic about his new career in telecommunications and his position with Nortel Networks.   Now he's throwing mail on the night shift at a U.S. Postal Service distribution center for $13 an hour.   JCC didn't plan to go from high-tech to blue collar.   But after 8 months without a job, the 37-year-old Raleigh, NC, resident had burned through his 401(k) savings and was nearing the end of un-employment insurance.   He took the postal job to pay the mortgage -- even though it leaves him wanting professionally...   [JCC] has a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering from Texas A&M University and a master's of business administration from Pfeiffer University...   According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the un-employment rate in the United States was 5.6% in January -- relatively low for a recession, which typically generates un-employment rates of 8% or more in the United States.   But hidden behind the not-so-grim un-employment rate is a harsher reality: Many workers are waiting out the down-turn in jobs that are far below their previous salaries or professional aspirations.   Reliable statistics on under-employment are difficult to find, in part because the government doesn't discriminate between people who have jobs and those who have jobs below their skill set.   But under-employment seems to be a particular problem for technology workers...   Americans suffered through more job losses in 2001 than any time since 1992, according to Chicago-based job placement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas.   The pace of lay-offs has quickened since 2001 September 11, with USA companies slashing 624,411 jobs since the terrorist attacks."
NBER says recession that troughed in 2001 April ended 2001 November.   The stock market crashed 2000-03-10.   The STEM job markets were already diving by 2000 September, and general job markets in mid-2001.   STEM product sales were tanking all through 2001 and 2002.   Job markets still had not fully recovered by the end of 2016.




Joel Mowbray _Town Hall_
trusted-traveler ID card not to be trusted




Theoden K. Janes _Arizona Republic_
College grads-to-be brace for grim job market
"A recent survey said employers expect to hire 20% fewer new graduates this year than last.   The outlook is even bleaker in the western United States, according to the National Association of Colleges and Employers study...   As the economy has slowed, employer participation in on-campus interviews through ASU's Career Services has declined 22%, said Elaine Stover, the office's associate director."





_East San Francisco Bay Business Times_
Longer job searches mark new year
"After falling to a record low of 2.2 months in the first half of 2001, according to the Challenger figures, the average job search time rose 45% in the third quarter, to 3.2 months.   The trend continued in the final quarter, with search times extending to 3.4 months."

Patrick J. McDonnell _Los Angeles CA Times_ pg 1
memo angers INS agents
"US immigration authorities at Los Angeles International Airport are so pressured to carry out inspections of arriving international passenbers that a top official has instructed agents 'not to respond' to concerns from airlines about illegal immigrants elsewhere in the airport...   Managers often rely on a triage approach, ignoring some problem areas while attacking those deemed more crucial...   In fiscal 2001, immigration officers at LAX inspected 8.5M arriving passengers..."


Bill Powell _Fortune_
Red China Shock: It's All Made in Red China Now: The nation's rapid ascent up the technology ladder has huge consequences for the global economy.
"The historic transformation of the world's most populous country, from a maker of Winnie the Pooh dolls and Air Jordans to the world's high-tech foundry, could not be more apparent.   A steady surge of foreign direct investment, unaffected, it seems, by global macroeconomic cycles, is recasting [Red China's] industrial base.   And it is safe to say that the world, particularly Japan and the rest of Asia, will never be the same.   Don't believe it?   In the late 19th century, foreign capital flooded into a newly emerging nation with lots of cheap labor and an insatiable appetite for the latest in industrial technology.   Soon enough, Lancashire wasn't the world's workshop anymore.   The United States was.   Ten years ago [Red China's] endless supply of cheap labor produced an endless supply of cheap (and often shoddy) products: toys and textiles and not a lot else.   Today [Red China] still makes all that stuff -- but a lot more besides...   As late as 5 years ago, companies produced in [Red China] to avoid high-tariff barriers (in autos, for example), to grab a foot-hold in a potentially giant market, or to get cheaper labor, mainly for making low-tech goods.   Beyond that, [Red China] presented daunting problems for manufacturers.   There were doubts about the quality of the work force.   Infrastructure conditions, such as a dearth of good roads or rail systems, meant that just-in-time component-supply systems were difficult to implement.   Intellectual property concerns, too, were common, as managers feared their most sophisticated manufacturing technologies could be ripped off almost as easily as a Lacoste shirt...   Multinationals have found [Red China's] labor force not only vast and cheap but also educated and disciplined.   The country also has a huge and rapidly growing pool of young engineering talent from which companies can draw (at US universities, by far the largest number of foreign graduate students in engineering and scientific disciplines are from [Red China]).   The result has been foreign direct investment (FDI) in [Red China] of more than $112.3G during the past three years and another $86G expected in the next two, according to Jun Ma, chief economist at DBS Securities in Hong Kong."
Investment Magnet:
Foreign direct investment
YearRed ChinaOther East Asia
2002 (forecast)$41.4G$21.2G
2003 (forecast)$44.6G$23.1G

_Wall Street Journal_ pg A1
Trained Out: Money from Temporary Foreign Workers Getting Redirected Away from Displaced STEM Workers

Amy Strahan Butler _Bloomberg_/_Seattle Times_
Still job hunting? You have lots of company


Martina Morris, Annette Bernhardt, Mark Handcock, Marc Scott & Joel Schwarz
Divergent Paths: 90%... now doing worse than they would have 20 years ago
"'With the kinds of declines in hourly wages that we find here, it is a bit of a puzzle why there has been so little public outcry.   One reason may be that people are working more hours & there are more women in the work force now.   The net result is that total household income levels have held steady, but it takes more effort to bring in the same income.   This kind of new economy may preserve living standards, but it is not family friendly.   As it sucks more & more resources out of the home, we are seeing rising stress on families, & declining time for being with children.'   Morris said such factors as the decline of labor unions & the increased trends of down-sizing & out-sourcing by businesses has produced a climate in which the American economy is producing more low-paying jobs than high-end ones."

Kathy M. Kristof _Los Angeles Times_ pg C4
Personal, Business Bankruptcy Filings Soar
"Debt-laden consumers & businesses filed for bankruptcy at a record clip last year, leading to a 19% hike in total bankruptcy filings, according to a report released Tuesdy...   Compared with 2000, total bankruptcy filings increased by 19% last year to 1.49M, surpassing the previous high of 1.44M set in 1998, according to the Administrative Office of the US Courts.   Personal bankruptcies were notable not just for their number, but also for their size [Jack] Williams [of the Georgia State U College of Law] said.   10 Fortune 500 companies & 22 fortune 1000 companies filed for protection from their creditors in 2001, Williams said...   'When big companies file for bankruptcy there's a ripple effect felt by smaller companies that provide supplies & services...   However, that ripple effect is not immediate...   Typically, consumers use up their savings, sell assets & borrow from relatives & friends for 6 to 9 months before they finally succumb to bankruptcy...   A January survey of bankruptcy attorneys found that 94% of those surveyed believed that bankruptcies would continue to rise this year, said Samuel J. Gerdano, executive director of the American Bankruptcy Institute in Alexandria, VA..."

_AP_/San Diego Union-Tribune_ pg C2
Home building jumps 6.3% in January
"Construction of new homes & apartments climbed last month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.68M units, a 6.3% increase over December's level, the Commerce Department reported yesterday...   pushed housing construction to its highest level since 2000 February & followed a 2.4% decline in December...   Rates on 30-year fixed-rate mortgages dropped to 6.45% in early November, their lowest point since Freddie Mac began conducting its nationwide survey in 1971...   mortgage rates... hovering in the 7% range...   Last week, Freddie Mac reported that the average rate on 30-year mortgages dipped to 6.86%.   Construction of single-family homes rose 3.5% in January to a rate of 1.35M, on top of a 4.4% increase in December.   Construction of apartments, condos & other multi-family housing rose to a rate of 287K units in January, an 8.3% increase from the previous month.   In December, multi-family housing construction plunged by 20.4%."

Daryl Strickland _Los Angeles Times_ pg C1
Sales of Homes Soar in SouthLand
"In Los Angeles county, 8087 new & existing condos & houses were sold last month, up more than 22% from a year earlier & the biggest volume for a January since the frenzied market of 1989.   The median price of homes sold advanced 17.5%, to a record $235K, according to DataQuick Information Systems, Inc. Orange & Ventura counties also saw double-digit sales increases last month, as consumers moved to lock in low interest rates.
  More renters have been driven to buy homes as rising apartment rents approach the cost of home ownership...   construction of new homes & apartments in January far exceeded expectations, partly helped by the milder winter weather...   At Westwood-based KB Home, the nation's 3rd-largest home builder, orders for new homes in California jumped almost 27% last month from a year earlier, Chief Executive Bruce Karatz said...
  DataQuick's report showed that sales in Los Angeles county climbed more than 20% in every category -- existing houses & condos as well as new homes...   when combining sales in November, December & January, the total is up a more modest 3.3% form the 3-month period a year earlier...   In Los Angeles county, the 17.5% jump in the median price last month was the strongest since 1989 August, when prices rose 19.5% according to DataQuick...
  In Orange county, which also experienced the best January in 13 years, sales jumped 14% from a year earlier, to 3134 houses & condos.   The median price of those sales was $308K, or nearly 12% ahead of last year, but was down from the $332K mark in December largely because fewer expensive new homes were sold.   Ventury county also saw steep growth, as the median prise rose 10% to 284K from a year ago.   Sales jumped 28% from the previous year."

2002-02-20 04:00PST (07:00EST) (12:00GMT)
Sharael Feist _CNET_
Follow the money: Tech executives bribing politicians to get personal favors
"But in the last several years, the computer industry has gone from wanting nothing to do with official Washington to being one of the top 10 campaign contributors, as ranked by industry.   Numbering 55th on the list of campaign contributors in the 1989-1990 election cycle, the computer industry finished seventh in 2000...   For the first six months of 2001, M$ would be number one with $1.2M, EDS Corporation is number 2 with $327K, and Propel.com contributed $262K...   I think with the computer industry there's been a remarkable coincidence in the rise of campaign contributions and the batting average of the Congress.   The computer industry has gotten virtually everything they've asked for because they gave a lot more money than ever before, and they were smart enough to give it to both Democrats and Republicans equally...   we're talking lots of money here.   We're talking about some hard-nosed executives who would not be frivolously throwing this money away if they didn't think they were getting something in return.   And so far, it looks like they're getting quite a lot in return...   In 1998, the computer industry was the 25th biggest contributor to elections.   In 2000, they jumped all the way to number 7.   They actually quadrupled the amount of money they gave in that one election cycle.   This year, they've dropped back a little bit, probably because of the dot-com bust, and now they're 11th.   They went from nowhere to the top 10.   And they're not quite as high as they were, but still a force to be reckoned with...   Most definitely.   One of the biggest things the industry got was hands off the Internet in general -- a continued moratorium on sales taxes on the Internet.   That's probably the biggest thing the industry could've hoped for and, probably, the biggest success that they've had in Washington so far.   The other thing is the H-1B visa, which allows them to bring in high-tech talent from over-seas quite easily."

_Judicial Watch_
Tax-victim funds defending Clintons in suits over private political use of government assets: but not in Privacy Act violations (Filegate)



Martin Crutsinger _AP_/_San Diego Union-Tribune_ pg C3
UpBeat reports hint recession will be short, mild
"The Conference Board reported that its Index of Leading Economic Indicators... shot up 0.6% in January, its 4th consecutive monthly increase...   The Commerce Department reported that the nation's trade deficit narrowed by 11.4% in December to $25.3G, its best showing since September...   the GDP may have risen by 1% in the October-December quarter... instead of the originally reported 0.2% increase...   If current indications hold up & the 3rd quarter, when the GDP fell at a 1.3% rate is the only negative period, the drop in economic output during the recession will be a small 0.3%...   The record has been held by the 1969-1970 recession, which also ended a long expansion, when GDP fell by 0.6%...   The NABE's [National Association for Business Economics's] newest forecast put economic growth at 1.5% for this year & an even stronger 3.8% in 2003...   The Labor Department reported yesterday that the number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits rose to 383K last week.   Although that was an increase of 10K from the previous week, analysts noted that new claims remained near a 6 month low & the rash of lay-offs that occurred after the 2001-09-11 terrorist attacks seems to have abated."
NBER says recession that troughed in 2001 April ended 2001 November.   The stock market crashed 2000-03-10.   The STEM job markets were already diving by 2000 September, and general job markets in mid-2001.   STEM product sales were tanking all through 2001 and 2002.   Job markets still had not fully recovered by the end of 2016.


Michael Kinsman _San Diego Union-Tribune_ pp C1 & C2
SD County Jobless Rate at Highest in 4.5 Years
"in San Diego county... the unemployment rate jumped last month to 3.9%, its highest point in 4.5 years.   A year ago, the county's jobless rate was 2.9%.   It was 3.3% in December...   California's seasonally adjusted jobless rate was 6.2% in January, up slightly from December.   Nationally, the seasonally adjusted rate for January was 5.6%...   Employers in the county eliminated 11K jobs last month, about half of which were retail positions.   In addition, the USPS cut 1400 gov't-sector jobs that were categorized as holiday hires...   In its annual revision of unemployment statistics, the state found that it had over-estimated the total number of jobs in the county in 2001 by 10,100.   When that adjustment was made, it showed that San Diego added 27,400 jobs last year, a 50% drop from the previous year & well below the 51,100 jobs created in 1998."
San Diego countyCaliforniaUSA
2001 December3.3%5.8%5.4%
2002 January3.9%6.7%6.3%

New [unemployment] claims statewide last month totaled 80,224, nearly double the previous January's total...   Even with the run-up in San Diego county's jobless rate, only 3 counties in the state fared better: San Luis Obispo county (3.3%), Marin county (3.4%), & Orange county (3.8%).   Tiny Colusa county in northern California had the highest jobless rate at 29.3%."

Dean Calbreath _San Diego Union-Tribune_ pp C1 & C8
Exports sag, but state out-performs rest of nation
"California exports dropped nearly 26% in the 4th quarter... remains the national leader in exports.   With nearly $107G in exports last year, the state accounted for 15% of US exports, out-performing 2nd-place Texas by almost $12G.   Because of its reliance on high-tech exports, a full-blown recession in the tech industry has caused California's decline to be much steeper than the national average.   During the year, California exports dropped 11%, nearly doubling the nation's 6% drop.   California exported $24.4G worth of goods in the 4th quarter, a 25.8% drop from $32.9G exported in the last 3 months of 2000.   Trade with Mexico slid 12% to $4G...   Exports to Japan, California's #2 trading partner, fell 36% to $3G as Tokyo entered a 2nd decade of economic sluggishness.   Sales to Canada, the state's 3rd-largest trade partner, fell 33% to $2.6G as the Canadian dollar, nick-named the loony, skimmed along at its lowest levels in history.   Exports to Taiwan, the UK & South Korea were each off between 28% & 30%.   Sales to [Red China] slipped 3%...   Throughout the year, exports to [Red China] rose nearly 32%, led by sales of computers, electronic products, non-electrical machinery, chemicals & scrap metal.   The worst major business sector in California for exports was computers & electronic products, which fell 24% to $104G.   Since that sector makes up 40% of the state's exports...   it does not bode well for the export figure, or for Silicon Valley, where the rate of unemployment has hit 7.5%."
NBER says recession that troughed in 2001 April ended 2001 November.   The stock market crashed 2000-03-10.   The STEM job markets were already diving by 2000 September, and general job markets in mid-2001.   STEM product sales were tanking all through 2001 and 2002.   Job markets still had not fully recovered by the end of 2016.

Marla Dickerson, Stuart Silverstein & Daryl Strickland _Los Angeles Times_ pp C1 & C3
State's Job Market Jumps in January
"Providing hope that much of California is coming out of its economic lull, officials reported Friday that the state gained 30,200 jobs in January, the biggest monthly increase in a year...   The state's unemployment rate crept higher, 7 the jobless rate in Orange county rose to its highest level in 6 years.   Although it remains one of the lowest in the state, Orange county's jobless rate climbed to 3.8% from a miniscule 2.4% in the same month last year, signaling that the local economic engine is losing some of its steam.   The state's unemployment rate climbed to 6.2% in January, up from 6.1% the previous 2 months, reaching its highest level in more than 4 years.
  By contrast, the national jobless rate fell to 5.6% last month from 5.8% in December...   December's job market was better than previously reported, with California picking up 10,900 jobs.   Earlier, officials reported that the state lost 600 jobs in December, following losses in each of the 3 previous months...
  In Los Angeles county, unemployment remained at 6.3% for a 2nd consecutive mongh.   Orange county's 3.8% jobless rate, which is not adjusted for seasonal factors, can be traced in part to the loss of retail jobs after the holiday season.   The rate stood at 3.2% in December...   yet the county added 16,600 jobs over the last 12 months -- a meager growth rate of 1.2% -- but one of the few to show a gain, economists noted...
  San Diego's jobless rate, also one of the lowest in the state, rose to 3.9% last month from 3.3% in December.
  The rise in the jobless level was widespread, with 57 in California's 58 counties reporting increases.   Still, the [SF] Bay area continues to be the state's weakest region...   The official job loss figure for 2001 stands at 26,100, versus the previously reported decline of 38,100.   The last time California's jobless rate matched last month's level was in 1997 October, when it also was 6.2%...
  the numbers for Los Angeles county are adjusted for seasonal trends...   Among other Southern California counties, whose rates are not adjusted for seasonal trends, the jobless rates were as follows: Riverside, 5.6% last month, up from 5.0% in December & 4.9% a year earlier.   San Bernardino, 5.3% last month, up from 4.5% in December & 4.7% a year earlier.   Ventura, 5.4% last month, up from 5.0% in December & 4.6% a year earlier."

Robert Kubey & Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi _Scientific American_
Television Addiction Is No Mere Metaphor
"Even researchers who study TV for a living marvel at the medium's hold on them personally.   Percy Tannenbaum of the University of California at Berkeley has written: 'Among life's more embarrassing moments have been countless occasions when I am engaged in conversation in a room while a TV set is on, and I cannot for the life of me stop from periodically glancing over to the screen.   This occurs not only during dull conversations but during reasonably interesting ones just as well.'
Scientists have been studying the effects of television for decades, generally focusing on whether watching violence on TV correlates with being violent in real life [see 'The Effects of Observing Violence' by Leonard Berkowitz; Scientific American 1964 February; and 'Communication and Social Environment' by George Gerbner 1972 September].   Less attention has been paid to the basic allure of the small screen--the medium, as opposed to the message...
Psychologists and psychiatrists formally define substance dependence as a disorder characterized by criteria that include spending a great deal of time using the substance; using it more often than one intends; thinking about reducing use or making repeated unsuccessful efforts to reduce use; giving up important social, family or occupational activities to use it; and reporting withdrawal symptoms when one stops using it.   All these criteria can apply to people who watch a lot of television...
In Gallup polls in 1992 and 1999, 2 out of 5 adult respondents and seven out of 10 teen-agers said they spent too much time watching TV.   Other surveys have consistently shown that roughly 10% of adults call themselves TV addicts...
we have used the Experience Sampling Method (ESM).   Participants carried a beeper, and we signaled them six to eight times a day, at random, over the period of a week; whenever they heard the beep, they wrote down what they were doing and how they were feeling using a standardized score-card.   As one might expect, people who were watching TV when we beeped them reported feeling relaxed and passive.
The EEG studies similarly show less mental stimulation, as measured by alpha brain-wave production, during viewing than during reading.   What is more surprising is that the sense of relaxation ends when the set is turned off, but the feelings of passivity and lowered alertness continue...
In part, the attraction seems to spring from our biological 'orienting response'... our instinctive visual or auditory reaction to any sudden or novel stimulus.   It is part of our evolutionary heritage, a built-in sensitivity to movement and potential predatory threats.   Typical orienting reactions include dilation of the blood vessels to the brain, slowing of the heart, and constriction of blood vessels to major muscle groups.   Alpha waves are blocked for a few seconds before returning to their baseline level, which is determined by the general level of mental arousal.   The brain focuses its attention on gathering more information while the rest of the body quiets...   The orienting response may partly explain common viewer remarks such as: 'If a television is on, I just can't keep my eyes off it.'...
In ads, action sequences and music videos, formal features frequently come at a rate of one per second, thus activating the orienting response continuously...   Increasing the frequency of edits -- defined here as a change from one camera angle to another in the same visual scene -- improved memory recognition, presumably because it focused attention on the screen.   Increasing the frequency of cuts -- changes to a new visual scene -- had a similar effect but only up to a point.   If the number of cuts exceeded 10 in two minutes, recognition dropped off sharply...
Music videos and commercials that use rapid intercutting of unrelated scenes are designed to hold attention more than they are to convey information.   People may remember the name of the product or band, but the details of the ad itself float in one ear and out the other.   The orienting response is over-worked.   Viewers still attend to the screen, but they feel tired and worn out, with little compensating psychological reward.   Our ESM findings show much the same thing."


Thomas Kupper _San Diego Union-Tribune_ pg H1
Earning more but falling behind
"Economists believe the average standard of living in San Diego county declined last year for the 1st time in 7 years, as income gains failed to keep up with inflation.   On average, incomes in San Diego continue to grow faster than in most other parts of the county...
  the region's inflation rate remains among the highest in the country, averaging 4.6% for all of 2001...   While real incomes registered significant gains in San Diego from 1995 to 2000, [Marney] Cox [of the San Diego Association of Governments - SANDAG] said those years may be the exception...
  'We're lacking high & middle-income job growth but gaining at the low end.'...   real incomes are falling both nationwide & in San Diego...   Across the country, people actually made less money at the end of 2001 than a year earlier, but an annual inflation rate of 1.6% made the decline less painful than it otherwise would have been.   In San Diego... incomes grew last year at the relatively healthy pace of 4.2%, estimates economist Kelly Cunningham of the San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce...
  Average incomes in San Diego county rose 5% or more every year from 1997 to 1999, gov't figures show, & Cunningham's estimate of 7.7% for 2000 was almost 2% above the inflation rate for that year...   The NASDAQ boom also enabled a lot of companies to raise money & add employees, many of them paid well above the county's average wage of about $37K a year."

"The Motley Fool" _San Diego Union-Tribune_ pg H5 (citing Nick Corcodilos _Ask The HeadHunter_)
"Internet job-posting boards, where companies found less than 1% of their hires in 2001
"Pursue companies, not jobs...   talk to the right people.   70% of jobs come from personal contacts...   The secret is never to ask for a job, but instead to ask for 'advice & guidance' about a line of work.   Ask, 'How [can I] prepare myself to work in your field?'."

2002-02-24 05:30PDT (08:30EDT) (12:30GMT)
Loretta Kalb _Sacramento Bee_
Tax changes this month could affect your return
"the Economic Growth & Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2001... passed by Congress last May, is expected to cut federal taxes by $1.35T through 2011...   The child credit has jumped to $600 for 2001, up from $500 per child for 2000.   It will continue climbing to $1K per child in 2010."


Tim Coffey _San Diego Daily Transcript_ pp A1 & A7
Local unemployment rate climbs
"The long-expected spike in the jobless rate finally occurred as San Diego county's unemployment rate climbed to 3.9% in january, the highest level since 1998 July.   The rate was up from December's revised rate of 3.3% & the 2.9% rate in 2000 January, said the state's Employment Development Department on Friday...   The department said San Diego county created 27,400 jobs in 2001, not the 37,900 it forecasted last month...   The unemployment rate last month for California was 6.7% & for the nation it was 6.3%, according to the EDD.   [In 2000 January] the jobless rate in the state topped 5.2% & for the nation unemployment was 4.7%...   San Diego's increase of 0.6% was only slightly below the 0.62% increase, on average, in the 11 previous years...   In the previous 3 years, businesses in San Diego county created more than 41K jobs a year.   the region produced 51,100 new jobs in 1998."

_San Diego Daily Transcript_ pg A1
Local Scene: Trolley hosts anti-terrorism course
"The Federal Law Enforcement Training Center will teach a week-long anti-terrorism course in San Diego starting February 25...   Jack Mugivan, the senior instructor in anti-terrorism at the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center, will lead the team of 9 teachers.   other instructors include members of the NYC Police Department & the FBI, as well as other federal, state & local law enforcement officials."



India, US agree to push joint research



body shop12,434
  "6 degrees of separation doesn't mean that everyone is linked to everyone else in just 6 steps.   It means that a very small number of people are linked to everyone else in a few steps, & the rest of us are linked to the world through those special few." --- Malcolm Gladwell 2002 _The Tipping Point_ pp 36-37  

2002 February
Casey B. Mulligan _NBER_
A Century of Labor-Leisure Distortions

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