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Friday, August 7, 2009

Some Good News

Defying predictions, the unemployment rate dropped .1% in July. The first drop in the rate in 15 months and possibly the best signal yet that the recession may be slowing or reversing:
The U.S. unemployment rate fell in July for the first time in 15 months as employers cut far fewer jobs than expected, providing the clearest sign yet that the economy was turning around.

Employers shed 247,000 jobs in July, the Labor Department said Friday, the least in any one month since last August, taking the unemployment rate to 9.4 percent, down from 9.5 percent in June. ...

The easing in the unemployment rate could have been the result of the labor force shrinking by 422,000 in July, far more than the 155,000 decline in June, suggesting jobless workers may have given up looking for new work.

In the U.S., for the purpose of calculating the unemployment rate, the labor force is defined as those with a job plus those out of a job but actively looking for work.


  1. To accept these figures put out by the Obama Labor Department at face value is absurd. It does not take into consideration all those people who are still out of a job but no longer qualify for unemployment benefits or are not fully employed (i.e. working part time rather than full time).

    Why is it that while the unemployment rate has declined, the welfare numbers have increased?

  2. Good point. The folks over at "Political Math" did an interesting analysis along those lines. Take a look: http://tiny.cc/sTEL8