Observations on the world today.

Sunday, May 16, 2004

Boomtown Rats 

D.C. Region Job Market Has Look Of a Boom (washingtonpost.com)
After three years of standing still, the Washington region's job market is hopping, adding 60,600 jobs in the year ended in March, on pace with the boom years of 1997 and 1998. "This year everyone is starting to feel good again," said Ralph W. Shrader, chief executive of Booz Allen, which has been on a hiring binge.

What is different this time is the source of the new jobs. Instead of a roaring expansion driven by businesses, 4 out of 5 local jobs being created can be attributed to extremely low interest rates, created by government stimulus, and booming government spending.
How ironic is it that - under a Republican president - government spending is half the source of a new job boom in DC? And how twisted is it that the other half of the reason for the boom is about to go away?
Consumers can't be blamed for feeling grumpy. With prices rising and interest rates creeping up, bargains are harder to come by and it's too late to land a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage anywhere close to 5 percent.


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