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) -- Research firm


said Wednesday it estimates the U.S. economy added 64,000 jobs in August, a decline of 60% from its July count of 161,000.

"The steady decline in government stimulus is bringing to light an underlying weak economy incapable of generating enough jobs to reduce unemployment," said Madeline Schnapp, Director of Macroeconomic Research at TrimTabs, in a statement. "Worse still, it appears that the slowdown is accelerating, increasing the risk of recession."

The market is anxiously awaiting the government's employment situation report for August, which is due before Friday's opening bell. The current consensus view is for non-farm payrolls to swell by 75,000, according to

, although some observers have theorized the economy may have actually

lost jobs

this month.

Later this morning, Automatic Data Processing will release its employment change report for the month with the estimate that non-farm private businesses added 100,000 jobs in August, down from 114,000 in July. Weekly initial and continuing jobless claims are due on Thursday with initial claims for the week ended Aug. 20 expected to remain elevated above 400,000.

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TrimTabs bases its estimate on "analysis of daily income tax deposits to the U.S. Treasury from all salaried U.S. employees."

The firm also cited a number of other datapoints that seem to indicate economic growth is slowing, including a sequential dip in wage and salary growth to 3.6% in August year-over-year from a 6.8% level in July, and real wage and salary growth, adjusting for inflation, coming in at zero for the month.

TrimTabs also said growth in online job demand went negative in August for the first time since April.

"The government's 'raid and trade' formula for economic growth has come to an end," said Schnapp. "Government leaders have raided taxpayer pocketbooks for trillions of dollars and transferred the money to the financial sector, which has traded those dollars for trillions in trading profits-all without any real increases in productivity."

Schnapp continued: "Unless President Obama or Fed Chair Bernanke can pull one more rabbit from a hat, 2012 is likely to be a very tough year."


Written by Michael Baron in New York.

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