Dec 17 2009

Nation’s Number Of Unemployed Still Expanding

Don’t trust statistics unless you know exactly how they were generated and what the error or uncertainty is in the number. And always question a surprise positive jump in any number when it comes from an administration in desperate need of a surprise jump in that number.

Take November’s lost jobs number – it seemed to be one hell of a turnaround from the year’s worth of data, where job losses averaged over 100,000 a month. 11,000 (the supposed jobs lost in November) is only 10% of the long term trend, which would be round off error in any estimate in my opinion.

What makes the November numbers unbelievable is the fact other unemployment numbers are either steady or skyrocketing. The unemployment and underemployment rates are basically steady – which belies any idea there were massively fewer jobs lost last month. But an even stronger indicator is the Emergency Unemployment Compensation (EUC) rolls, which skyrocketed by 604,209 in November alone, reaching an astonishing 4,226,300 at the end of November:

I seriously doubt November was all that good. It was more likely an artifact of the short holiday month than any real uptick in the economy – as this week’s job report shows (original here).

The number of newly laid off workers filing claims for unemployment benefits unexpectedly rose last week as the recovery of the nation’s battered labor market proceeds in fits and starts.

The Labor Department said Thursday that the number of new jobless claims rose to 480,000 last week, up 7,000 from the previous week. That was a worse performance than the decline to 465,000 that economists had expected.

Apparently there has not been sufficient seasonal hiring, as would be expected this time of year. Which means the January numbers that come out around the State of The Union speech are going to be horrific. A seasoned administration would have known not to let the liberal ideologues get them into this mess with their ridiculous stimulus bill. But the inexperienced President Obama did just that, and will pay for that mistake all through his administration.

Real executives don’t outsource the hard decisions.

5 responses so far

5 Responses to “Nation’s Number Of Unemployed Still Expanding”

  1. fiatlux says:

    Maybe they can put Joe Biden in charge of new jobs now that he has perfected the auditing of stimulus spending and eliminated waste and fraud.

    In viewing statistics that are compiled like these job numbers, “the trend is your friend.” While not a BO fan, I have a job, like many people, that depends on being right about the direction of the economy. It costs me money to not be objective and take into account that some policies that are an anathema to me might result in sustained, productive growth and private sector hiring.

    So, I keep an eye on the trend lines and am always prepared to say I was wrong. I have not seen much that makes me place a bet on private sector job growth happening soon.

    On a smaller, statistically insignificant scale, I see young adults of my children s ages and their struggles in this job market. It is a disaster. The teen agers are stuck competing with illegal aliens for part time work. The recent college grads are asked to work as unpaid interns or sub minimum wage assistants to get a foot in the door. Some react well and get a couple jobs and build character. Many others go into the Obama corps jobs that these massive budgets are funding where they are essentially low paid activists. They get a couple grand towards student loans if they last a year plus health benfits (worth about $125/mo. for a healthy 22 year old) and are encouraged to apply for food stamps to supplement their “volunteer” job. Thus is the age of BO.

  2. borepatch says:

    I haven’t seen anything in any of the MSM reports that says that the numbers are seasonally adjusted. You’d expect a drop in the raw number of unemployed, as holiday season retail hiring bloats for the expected 30 days of shopping hell.

    Since none of the reports (that I’ve seen) say these are seasonally adjusted, I expect that they’re not. This means that the seasonally adjusted rate that will come out probably in January will show that unemployment increased – and my a lot more than 11,000.

    More “hide the decline”, in a different context.

  3. AJStrata says:

    borepatch, follow the link to the DOL site, they clearly note seasonal adjustments.

  4. momdear1 says:

    Could it possibly be that the number of new people applying for unemployment benefits has fallen because we are running out of jobs to lose? I have a question. Since the US has been carrying the whole world on it’s back since WWII, as evidenced by the fact that every time we have an economic problem the whole world goes into decline, just who is going to do that job once the “emerging” countries have sucked every manufacturing job and dollar out of this country? I don’t see any other country that would be willing to do what we have done.

  5. [...] this next year. We the people are now faced with 11% unemployment, and 17.2% underemployment, with over 4 million people clinging to the last bit of the jobless safety net, the Emergency Unemployment Compensation (EUC) program. And we are being promised another year of [...]