jobsLeading HR consultancy firm Human Alliance Ltd. reports that its analysis of December 2012’s employment numbers from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) has led it to anticipate a troubled labor market through at least the first half of 2013.

“Job growth remained steady this month at 155,000 jobs created which is a little bit more than the average for the calendar year of 2012. I think the issue now is that the numbers did not grow enough for such a busy holiday season, and they did not grow where we expected them to grow. We have concerns about the damage from Sandy that continues to be a drag on the economies of the Mid-Atlantic States, and where the job growth in those states has been recently,” Joseph Shaheen, consultant at Human Alliance, said.

Shaheen continued, “What we are still struggling with is the increase in the ‘food services and drinking’ BLS classification, which can either be interpreted as a strong sign of labor employment, or an increase in partial employment of unemployed workers. Either way the growth was not large enough to make us feel secure about the first quarter of 2013. We should’ve seen a bigger jump in retail, and also in construction after Sandy.”

Of particular focus in the report is the analysis of the effects of Hurricane Sandy and Congress’ failure to pass aid legislation to boost employment in affected states. Human Alliance predicts that as many as 1 million jobs could go uncreated, without the passage of aid legislation, in New York, New Jersey, and even Maryland.

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