Thursday, April 5, 2012

The state of the US job market right now

The US Department of Labor released it's weekly number for new unemployment benefits for the last week of March today. Marketwatch has a story about it here:

What I don't understand is this..

According to the numbers, 357,000 NEW claims for unemployment benefits were filed in the week ending March 31st. Meanwhile, there was only a DROP of 16,000 from the total of people ALREADY receiving said benefits. So, that means (by my admittedly sketchy math) that the TOTAL number of people NOW receiving unemployment benefit checks has INCREASED by 341,000.

If the US economy is putting more people ONTO the unemployment rolls then it is taking OFF, how can that possibly be spun by the media as a GOOD report? Sure, there were a few thousand fewer new benefits applications filed this last month then the month before, but that's like saying that a slowing of an increase in spending is a CUT in said spending. It's just not intellectually honest.

Am I wrong here, or what?

I'd like to hear any and all feedback....

This just in: March saw non-farm payroll jobs increase by only 120,000, as opposed to the 210,000 that analysts were expecting. And yet, the OFFICIAL unemployment rate DROPS by 1/10 of a percent.

Does ANYONE still buy these numbers?

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