U.S. unemployment up again

Roughly twice Australia's rate

The Obama economy continues to drift downward as our nation’s jobless rate is back at 9 percent with the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reporting that the number of unemployed persons increased by 205,000 in April.

Yet, incredibly the BLS writes in their May 6, 2011 release that, “The number of unemployed persons, at 13.7 million, changed little in April.” 205,000 more people unemployed is not a small change by anyone’s standards. To put it into perspective, 205,000 newly unemployed is the equivalent of slightly fewer than two-thirds of everyone who currently holds a job in the entire state of Alaska being laid off.

Ironically, the same report from BLS shows that there are almost three million more people “not in the labor force” in April 2011, than in April 2010 with the number of drop outs increasing by 131,000 last month alone.

All this bad news in the employment report was overshadowed by the contradictory claim in the report that 244,000 new private sector jobs were created by the economy in April.

While I wish the economy had grown by almost a quarter of a million jobs, it is hard to reconcile this number with the reality of the rest of this and other U.S. Labor Department reports. For instance, the number of people that BLS reports as being employed in April 2011 dropped by 190,000, a number that is irreconcilable with the claimed 244,000 new jobs created claim.

Also, the weekly U.S. Labor Department report on new Unemployment Insurance Claims that closed out the month of April showed that unemployment was accelerating through the month.


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