You’re going to hear a lot of cheerleading this weekend about the unemployment number dropping to the lowest since 2008. Sorry to be a wet-blanket (for your information, my daughter tells me people read my writing to get depressed), but it all comes down to how the number is (mis-)calculated today.
Yeah, we have a low “unemployment” figure, but add in all of the people who are actually unemployed, and it would be an entirely different story.
See this post at ZeroHedge: “Labor Participation Rate Drops To 36 Year Low; Record 92.6 Million Americans Not In Labor Force.”
While by now everyone should know the answer, for those curious why the US unemployment rate just slid once more to a meager 5.9%, the lowest point since the summer of 2008, the answer is the same one we have shown every month since 2010: the collapse in the labor force participation rate, which in September slid from an already three decade low 62.8% to 62.7% – the lowest in over 36 years, matching the February 1978 lows. And while according to the Household Survey, 232,000 people found jobs, what is more disturbing is that the people not in the labor force, rose to a new record high, increasing by 315,000 to 92.6 million!
And that’s how you get a fresh cycle low in the unemployment rate.
So the next time Obama asks you if you are “better off now than 6 years ago” show him this chart of employment to the overall population: it speaks louder than the president ever could.
The percentage of people working just hit a 36-year low, at the same time they’re trumpeting this wonderful decrease in the unemployment figure. How can that be? If you can explain it, you might want to apply for a job in government statistics.
No… wait… if you can explain the truth, you’d never get hired, because it wouldn’t make them look good.