Friday, December 7, 2012

A Run At The November Numbers

Copyright 2012 by P-G Matuszak. All Rights Reserved.

At 830 Eastern Time, The US Bureau of Labor Statistics, under the US Department of Labor, part of the Executive Branch's bureaucracy controlled by Obama released its monthly report on jobs, employment, unemployment, workforce participation, and economic indicators.

As stated in previous reports, the U3 unemployment rate itself, taken out of context misleadingly appears as though things have gotten better. Those who are too lazy to look deeper will claim the rate to be good news.

The November U3 unemployment rate dropped to 7.7% from October's initial 7.9%.

Of note, the number of jobs "created" in October was revised downward, meaning that 7.9% reported rate was inaccurate and really closer to 8.1%. September's numbers were also revised, a second time, to reflect that the rate was actually much worse than initially reported as well. Expect similar adjustments and revisions for November's numbers to come in later reports.

The summary of the jobs report reads as follows:

The unemployment rate edged down to 7.7 percent
in November. The number of unemployed persons, 
at 12.0 million, changed little.

Among the major worker groups, the unemployment 
rates for adult men (7.2 percent), adult women 
(7.0 percent), teenagers (23.5 percent), whites 
(6.8 percent), and Hispanics (10.0 percent) 
showed little or no change in November. The 
unemployment rate for blacks (13.2 percent)
declined over the month. The jobless rate for 
Asians was 6.4 percent (not seasonally adjusted), 
little changed from a year earlier. 

The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless
 for 27 weeks or more)was little changed at 
4.8 million in November. These individuals 
accounted for 40.1 percent of the unemployed. 

The civilian labor force participation rate 
declined by 0.2 percentage point to 63.6 
percent in November, offsetting an increase of 
the same amount in October. Total employment 
was about unchanged in November, following 
a combined increase of 1.3 million over the 
prior 2 months. The employment-population 
ratio, at 58.7 percent, changed little in 

The number of persons employed part time for 
economic reasons (sometimes referred to as 
involuntary part-time workers), at 8.2 million 
in November, was little changed over the month. 
These individuals were working part time 
because their hours had been cut back or 
because they were unable to find a full-time 

Without rehashing explanations given in previous analyses from previous months, let's review why this is bad news that demonstrates the economy is not only stagnated, but worsening under Obama's administration.

Workforce participation has declined steadily since Obama took office. This means fewer people who are capable, of age, and able to work are choosing to do so. More people are retiring early. More people are giving up. Fewer people are earning. Fewer people are spending.

The unemployment rate is the percentage of the workforce that is actively seeking employment (has applied for a job within the past 4 weeks), does not have employment (even part-time), and  is receiving a government subsidy check while they continue to seek employment.

The U3 unemployment fell by the same amount as the workforce participation rate fell -- 0.2%. While that seems like it would mean that for each person that gave up, somebody was hired, that is false. 0.2% more of working age and able bodied members of the population gave up. Of what remained, 0.2% found some form of employment. 3 people gave up and left the workforce for each person who found a job. The total number, if compared to the workforce participation rate of 2008, would make the unemployment rate closer to 15.6%.

The number of employed or seeking employment when compared to the overall US population also fell to 58.7%.

The number of long-term unemployed remained steady. The total number of unemployed remained steady. The number of personnel seeking full-time employment who are stuck with part-time jobs remained steady. And all of this in a month known for increased seasonal hires, especially in retail industries.

All of these remained stagnated. That is not growth. That is not prosperity. That is not "progress". It is a rut.

Then the number of people even willing to try to find a job dropped. When all but one thing is stagnant, and the one thing that isn't stagnant is getting worse, we call that a decline.

With 12.1 million considered unemployed, 8.2 million considered underemployed means 20.3 million people who want to work towards prosperity who cannot. I think that would mean a U6 close to 13% of a now reduced workforce. If the workforce participation rate were the same as December 2008, the U6 would be over 21%.

That is the real unemployment rate.

This isn't a recovery. It is failure. It is government mandated and directed failure. It is government impeding upon the natural right of "The Pursuit of Happiness".

Welcome to your Obama Economy. Merry Christmas.