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The Conference Board Index Forecasts More Job Losses


New York City The Conference Board Employment Trends Index (ETI) declined further in November. The index fell to 102.9, down 1.6% from the October revised figure of 104.5, and down over 13% from a year ago.

“Thus far, the U.S. economy has lost 1.9 million jobs and the declines in the ETI suggest job losses could very well surpass 3 million by mid-2009,” said Gad Levanon, senior economist at The Conference Board. “The continued deterioration in the labor market will exert significant downward pressure on wages.”

The 16 month-long decline in the ETI is seen in all eight of its components, most notably over the past six months in temporary-help hires and part-time workers for economic reasons, notes Levanon.

The index aggregates eight labor-market indicators, each of which has proven accurate in its own area. Aggregating individual indicators into a composite index filters out so-called “noise” to show underlying trends more clearly, according to The Conferences Board.

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