Former Trump Adviser Larry Kudlow Says Friday Jobs Report a ‘Fluke’

Former Trump Adviser Larry Kudlow Says Friday Jobs Report a 'Fluke' larry kudlow speaks outside Larry Kudlow speaks at the White House in 2020. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

By Solange Reyner | Sunday, 09 May 2021 01:45 PM

Friday’s jobs report is a complete “fluke,” former top Trump economic adviser Larry Kudlow told radio host John Catsimatidis Sunday during an appearance on the “The Cats Roundtable” on WABC 770 AM.

“I thought the numbers were a complete fluke.… During the pandemic contraction last year, all the seasonal adjustments the government uses … were thrown out of whack,” he said. “They’re completely screwed up. If you look at today’s numbers for April, [they’re] not seasonally adjusted. Actually, jobs increased (by) more than 1 million.… That’s the fact.… I think you’re going to see a big, big number next month.”

The Bureau of Labor Statistics on Friday said only 266,000 jobs were added in April, well below the projected figure of nearly one million.

Kudlow also criticized President Joe Biden’s “free cash to stay at home” program concerning the federal government’s extension of enhanced unemployment benefits that includes a $300 weekly supplement and praised Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis for implementing a requirement that people receiving benefits need to provide proof that they’re looking for a job.

“Governor [Ron] DeSantis did the right thing… He announced an executive order that if you get state unemployment benefits through the state of Florida, you’re going to have to prove that you are looking for a job,” said Kudlow.

“That’s the way it used to be for all welfare programs… You had to show you were working for a job. The Biden administration has abolished all of that. So, it’s basically free cash to stay home. That undermines the dignity of work.”

Governors from Montana and South Carolina last week announced they would be ending the extending benefits, citing labor shortages.

Economists say some workers could still be fearful of returning to work even as all adult Americans are now eligible to receive COVID-19 vaccinations. Others also cited problems with childcare as in-person classes remain limited in many school districts. Labor and input shortages have been well documented by business surveys.

"The employment gain is understated in part because of the generous largess from Washington," said Sung Won Sohn, a finance and economics professor at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles. "Short-staffed restaurant owners are working overtime; truck drivers are impossible to find even after a hefty increase in hourly wages and loading docks at warehouses are keeping trucks idle as there aren't enough workers."

Twelve months ago, the economy purged a record 20.679 million jobs as it reeled from mandatory closures of nonessential businesses to slow the first wave of COVID-19 infections. That plunge could have thrown off the model that the government uses to adjust the data for seasonal fluctuations, resulting in the April payrolls number being below forecasts.

Information from Reuters was used in this report.

Original Article