Friday, December 09, 2011

Opinion: Don't be fooled by the latest jobless numbers

From an excellent op-ed published in the West Chester Daily Local News on the misleading unemployment numbers released by the Obama Administration:
The technical reason the number of unemployed declined is that more than 350,000 people stopped looking for work last week and are no longer being carried on the books. In fact, if the total number of people who have stopped looking for work over the past few years were being counted (either because they are being sustained by endless unemployment insurance benefits or are simply discouraged because the economy IS moribund), the more accurate unemployment figure is closer to 17 percent ... (Table U-6 — Total unemployed, plus all persons marginally attached to the labor force, plus total employed part time for economic reasons, as a percent of the civilian labor force plus all persons marginally attached to the labor force, from Bureau of Labor Statistics).

The jobless rate has now remained above 8 percent since February 2009, the longest stretch since monthly records began in 1948. Additionally, there are still 5.7 million long-term unemployed (jobless for 27 weeks and over), which represents 43 percent of the total unemployed and the average duration of unemployment rose to 40.9 weeks, the highest on record.
Don't be fooled by the latest numbers -

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