This Day On The Street
Continue to site
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here

Green Energy = Job Growth? Prove It

(Green energy, green jobs story updated for First Solar plant announcement)

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) --

You've heard it or read it in a headline somewhere and probably taken it for granted: green energy = job growth. Sounds simple enough. It also makes one feel good about the direction in which the country is headed at a time when national employment remains at a dangerously high level.

There's no shortage of opportunities to soak up the green energy = job growth rhetoric.

Google announced this week that it's backing the development of an offshore wind market for the U.S., and among all the reasons to get behind wind energy, Google said the project will create lots of jobs for the U.S. economy. The powerful United Steelworkers union recently filed a petition with the Obama administration citing China for unfair trade practices in support of its emerging green energy sector and taking valuable manufacturing jobs from the U.S.

Maybe it was a magazine profile of an innovative solar firm in Silicon Valley, a darling of the venture capital crowd -- even got President Obama to pose for a photo on the floor of their hi-tech plant -- that sealed the science of the green energy = job growth formula. Maybe it was the United Steelworkers petition or a sound bite from a U.S. senator decrying the loss of manufacturing jobs to China and pleading with America to get behind green energy as a way to transform our job market and invent a new economy.

Yet the green energy = job growth formula is lacking in one important respect: actual labor data. Other than annual reports from trade groups that are paid for by the green energy sector companies as part of their lobbying efforts, there hasn't been any accepted economic model or nationwide census to study the actual trends in green energy hiring.

That's about to change, but not overnight. The effort to show that the green energy sector is creating a level of employment that is a driver of the U.S. economy is just getting started, and it could be a few years before the data becomes a reliable source for economists, the markets, and you and me, looking for jobs -- even if hopefully the unemployment level is not still hovering near 10%.

It doesn't take an economic guru to understand that employment data is a major market force. Consider last Friday's non-farm payroll report from the government: another disappointing jobs number and the Dow finally eclipses the 11,000 point mark. Investors bet the Federal Reserve will take one look at the national employment picture and step in to stimulate the economy.
1 of 5

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Only $9.95
14-Days Free
Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Real Money

More than 30 investing pros with skin in the game give you actionable insight and investment ideas.

Product Features:
  • Access to Jim Cramer's daily blog
  • Intraday commentary and news
  • Real-time trading forums
Only $49.95
14-Days Free
14-Days Free
BWEN $3.38 2.42%
FSLR $55.84 -2.07%
AAPL $93.74 -1.15%
FB $117.58 0.73%
GOOG $693.01 0.29%


Chart of I:DJI
DOW 17,773.64 -57.12 -0.32%
S&P 500 2,065.30 -10.51 -0.51%
NASDAQ 4,775.3580 -29.9330 -0.62%

Free Reports

Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs