If Not for the Sequester….

So the April Jobs Report is out, and net job growth for the month was 165,000 as opposed to the consensus expectation of 144,000. The number that most Americans focus on, the unemployment rate, ticked down slightly to 7.5%. But the real news was in upward revisions of the jobs numbers for the last two months: March was revised from 88,000 to 138,000, and February from 268,000 to 332,000 (!).

It’s beginning to become hard to deny that the economy was working on a serious recovery that has slowed down significantly. Perhaps it’s a coincidence this has almost entirely coincided with the imposition and gradual impact of the appropriations sequester; perhaps not. Since that impact is only now really beginning to appear, we may soon find out.

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Ed Kilgore

Ed Kilgore, a Monthly contributing editor, is a columnist for the Daily Intelligencer, New York magazine’s politics blog, and the managing editor for the Democratic Strategist.