The following commentary comes from an independent investor or market observer as part of TheStreet's guest contributor program, which is separate from the company's news coverage.
NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Thursday, the Commerce Department is expected to report the deficit on international trade in goods and services was $51.7 billion in February, down just slightly from January.
The $620 billion annual trade gap is the most significant barrier to more robust growth and jobs creation, and oil and subsidized imports from China are the culprits.
In March, the economy added 120,000 jobs, but 362,000 jobs must be created each month for three years to lower unemployment to 6%.Unemployment is down to 8.2% from 10% in October 2009, largely because working aged adults are dropping out of the labor market -- they are neither employed, nor seeking work. The most effective jobs creation program has been to convince more adults that they don't want a job or it's futile to seek a decent position -- that phenomenon has accounted for more than 80% of the reduction in the unemployment rate. Follow TheStreet on Twitter and become a fan on Facebook. Just to keep up with productivity and population growth, which average about 2% and 1% a year respectively, the economy must grow 3% a year -- unless, of course, even more adults become discouraged and quit looking for work.