September 4, 2015 Last Updated 8:49 am

Unemployment rate falls to lowest level since April ’08; Syrian refugee crisis dominates front pages

Stock markets in Europe were trading sharply lower in anticipation of a weak US jobs report, and while US markets initially opened mixed, they quickly fell off as jobs report offered both good and bad news on the economy

The stock markets in Europe, fearing a slowdown not in the Asian economy, but in the US, traded sharply lower today before the release of the jobs report. That report did, in fact, prove disappointing with only 173,000 new jobs created. But July’s numbers were revised upward and the US unemployment rate fell to 5.1 percent, the lowest rate since April 2008.

BLS-chartNonetheless, stock markets across Europe are down sharply today, and US markets are set to open lower, as well. The Friday before Labor Day is providing traders one last chance to sell off the market.

But investors losing a few dollars or pounds is a minor story compared to the refugee/migration story in Europe. The focus today is on Hungry where hundreds are trying to cross the country to get to Germany. The questions on everybody’s mind is where will these refugees go, who will take them in, and who will pay for it? The UK government under David Cameron has swayed in the wind, first declaring that Britain had done enough, then pledging to do more as sad images are published of children in distress, or washing up on Europe’s shores.

“The migrant crisis in Europe is essentially self-inflicted,” said Lina Khatib, a research associate at the University of London is quoted in the lead story on “Had European countries sought serious solutions to political conflicts like the one in Syria, and dedicated enough time and resources to humanitarian assistance abroad, Europe would not be in this position today.”

Telegraph-liveblogThe Guardian is live blogging the crisis as are other UK papers including The Telegraph (at left).

One story that looks to be nearing an end is the saga of the Kentucky clerk, Kim Davis, who won’t issue marriage licenses because she read somewhere that God hates gays, or some such nonsense. Her husband is quoted as saying “just because five Supreme Court judges make a ruling, it’s not a law.” Really?

Well, deputy clerks in the Rowan County clerk’s office started issuing marriage licenses today – hopefully to those who actually want to get married – and so the judge in the case may release Davis from the county detention center in time for the Labor Day holiday. But as Davis doesn’t want to do her job, maybe she shouldn’t be allowed to celebrate a holiday for workers. I don’t know, and really don’t care, the sooner this woman is off the front pages the better.

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