unemployed

Unemployment Rate 7.7% Due to Less People in the Labor Force for November 2012

The BLS employment report shows the unemployment rate ticked down by 0.2 percentage points to 7.7%. The reason for the unemployment rate decrease is less people participated in the labor force in November. Superstorm Sandy had little effect on the monthly employment figures.

Current Population Survey Employment Report in Graphs, Unemployment Rate 7.9% for October 2012

The BLS employment report shows the unemployment rate ticked up by 0.1 percentage points to 7.9%. The reason for this up-tick is more people participated in the labor force in October. We love economic eye candy at The Economic Populist and this overview graphs many of the statistics from the Current Population Survey of the employment report.

 

The Weirdness in Initial Unemployment Claims 30k Drop for the Week ending on October 6th, 2012

The DOL reported Initial weekly unemployment claims for the week ending on October 6th, 2012 were 339,000, a 30,000 drop from the previous week of 369,000. From pundits to politicians, people are freaking out for this makes initial claims the lowest level since February 16th, 2008.

 

Exploring the Wild, Weird World of Employment Numbers From Statistical Space

It's like someone pulled the unemployment rate out of a Star Trek transporter, as if America entered a time warp machine and we moved to another dimension through a worm hole. A 0.3 percentage point drop to 7.8% makes no sense when there were only 114,000 jobs added. Captain, can the unemployment rate be right and we really did defy the laws of statistics?

We want to point to something which might in part explain what happened this month with the household survey statistics. That is how long someone holds a job. We don't have monthly statistics on job tenure, yet it could very well be that finally, people are working longer at a job. The never ending Schindler's List attitude towards U.S. workers may have abated. The U.S. has disposable worker syndrome, where people are laid off and fired for no damn good reason at all. It's a fact of the American work life while one has a job one week, there is no guarantee one will have a job the next.

To wit, let's look at another obscure BLS statistic, labor force status flows. This is the number of people flowing from being in the labor force, out of the labor force, employed and unemployed on a monthly basis. Below is a graph of the monthly changes of people who moved into employment from already having a job, not being counted at all, or being part of the official unemployed since 2006.

flows to employment

How Many Jobs Are Needed to Keep Up with Population Growth?

The press quotes all sorts of figures for the number of monthly job gains needed to keep up with population growth. We see numbers like 80,000, 100,000, 125,000 and 175,000 thrown around like statistical snow as the number of jobs needed each month just to keep up. What's the right one? How many jobs are needed each month just to keep up with population growth?

BLS Employment Report Shows 96,000 Jobs and an Unemployment Rate of 8.1% for August 2012

The August 2012 BLS unemployment report shows total nonfarm payroll jobs gained were 96,000. Even worse news, the last two months of job gains were revised down. July's gains are now 141,000, revised from 163,000 payroll jobs and June is a now a measly 45,000 jobs, also revised down from 64,000.

Job JOLTS - There were 3.4 Unemployed People per Job Opening for June 2012

The BLS JOLTS, or Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey reports the never ceasing abysmal jobs market. The June 2012 statistics show there were 3.39 official unemployed persons for every position available*. There were 3,762,000 job openings for June 2012, a 2.87% increase from the previous month of 3,657,000. Openings are still way below pre-recession levels of 4.7 million. Job openings have increased 72% from their July 2009 trough, yet opportunities are miles away from the 1.8 persons per job opening ratio at the start of the recession, December 2007. There are some in the press who focus on levels, to make the job market seem better than it is. Not so, it's still horrific. Below is the graph of June official unemployed, 12.749 million, per job opening.

 

job openings per official unemployed

 

Job JOLTS - There are 3.5 Unemployed People Per Job Opening for May 2012

The BLS JOLTS, or Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey reports the never ceasing abysmal jobs market. The May 2012 statistics show there were 3.5 official unemployed persons for every position available*. There were 3,642,000 job openings for May 2012, a 5.7% increase from the previous month of 3,447,000. Openings are still way below pre-recession levels of 4.7 million. Job openings have increased 67% from their July 2009 trough, yet opportunities are miles away from the 1.8 persons per job opening ratio at the start of the recession, December 2007. Below is the graph of May official unemployed, 12.72 million, per job opening.

 

job openings per official unemployed

 

Job openings are all types of jobs, temporary, part-time, seasonal and full-time. Hires are U.S. citizens, permanent residents, illegals and foreign guest workers.

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