unemployment rate

A Look at September's Payrolls from the Employment Report

The BLS unemployment report shows total nonfarm payroll jobs gained were 114,000 for September 2012 and the unemployment rate dropped to an artificial 7.8%. Some better news was August's payrolls were revised up by 40,000 jobs to 181,000 and July was also revised up by 46,000 jobs to show a gain of 142,000 in nonfarm payrolls. The below graph shows the monthly change in nonfarm payrolls 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?

More Depressing Unemployment Statistics for May 2012

The May employment report was dismal. This overview shows the situation is even worse than dismal, it is depressing in more ways than one. Officially there are 12.72 million people unemployed and the unemployment rate is 8.2%. We calculate below an alternative unemployment rate of 16.8%, which shows 27.11 million people need a full-time, real job.

Why Did The March Unemployment Rate Go Down When Only 120,000 Payroll Jobs Were Added?

The press and pundits shout the unemployment rate dropped to 8.2%, the lowest since January 2009, over three years ago. Yet March only added 120,000 jobs and those reported as employed dropped by -31,000. So, how could the official unemployment rate drop when the jobs added barely keeps up with population growth and the increase in those employed actually dropped?

Unemployment 8.2%, 120,000 Jobs for March 2012

The March 2012 monthly unemployment figures show the official unemployment rate dropped a 10th of a percentage point to 8.2%, and the total nonfarm payroll jobs gained was 120,000. These statistics are not the blow out most were hoping for. Total private jobs came in at 121,000. Government jobs dropped, -1,000. While manufacturing gained 37,000 jobs, retail trade, a category that includes retail sales clerks, dropped -33,800 jobs.


unemployment rate


Unemployment 8.3%, 227,000 Jobs for February 2012

The February 2012 monthly unemployment figures show the official unemployment rate remained the same, 8.3%, and the total jobs gained were 227,000. While this report is good news, we've got a long, long way to go before returning to a healthy labor market. Total private jobs came in at 233,000. Government jobs dropped, -6,000. Most of the jobs were in the service sector, 209,000.

The January Employment Report Shows Things Aren't as Rosy as Some Want to Believe

While the pundits and press gush over this month's employment report, things are still not rosy. The new official unemployed tally is 12,758,000. The average length of unemployment is still very high, 40.1 weeks.


average duration unemployment


People unemployed for 27 weeks or more is now 42.2% of the total unemployed, or 5,518,000 million. This number has barely budged as a percentage of total unemployed in comparison to pre-recession and historical levels.