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Unemploymnent Up Again. (why Smart People Read The News On Friday Afternoon.)

Guess what? On a friday afternoon they announced that Unemployment numbers are going back up.

The "recovery" announced in February was anything but.
TwylaMarie TwylaMarie 41-45, F 5 Responses Jun 2, 2012

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Don't forget, that the Unemployment extensions have been exausted for a large number of people. Thereby they have been dropped from the rolls of "Unemployed, even though they are still out of work for the past 3 years

The unemployment rate is the number of people the Bureau of Labor Statistics deems unemployed (but not out of the labor force) to the number of people deemed in the labor force. Both sides of this ratio embody enormous subjectivity. I concluded decades ago that the unemployment rate is meaningless.<br />
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Much better is the employment-population ratio (EPR), the ratio of full time equivalent jobs to the population not institutionalised (mainly jail). The BLS does not report the number I consider most relevant, namely the EPR for people between their 25th and 65th birthdays, divided by the total number of such people. Here's some data we do have.<br />
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The EPR for men has been declining erratically since it was first calculated in 1948, from about 85% to the upper 60s. What's going in is a rising fraction of men who are retired or on disability or living on the edge. 60 years ago, most men did not retire because they simply couldn't afford it (before 1952, Social Security payments covered no more than a few groceries and the power bill). The post 2008 level of the EPR has been lower than at any time pre 2008.<br /><br />
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The EPR for women rose, 1948-2000, from 30% to almost 60%, but is now about 55%, what it was about 20 years ago. I doubt that a rising retirement rate by women explains this, because my hunch is that women have always retired in their 60s. In 1950, it was not customary for a married woman to work, especially if there were children in the house. One of the biggest quiet social changes of the last century was the rise in the labor force participation of married women, and that is the fact driving the figures for women.<br /><br />
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The overall ratio is about what it was in the latter 1970s, which I remember as being fairly good times. It may be an unpleasant truth that the business of America can get done even when employing a smaller fraction of the adult population than was the norm 1984-2008.<br />

You sure use a lot of St. Louis Federal Bank statistics. I don't know that bank well, but it seems like an odd source. I'd say "okay" since the numbers seem conservative but otherwise in line with what see elsewhere. Then I see your line "The overall ratio is about what it was in the latter 1970s, which I remember as being fairly good times." I'm sorry, I don't know too many people - actually anyone - that would characterize the late 1970's that way. I believe the words that were used at the time were "economic malaise" characterized by staggeringly high inflation, low employment, the demise of our manufacturing base without the corresponding rise in the IT economy. Not a good time by any stretch anywhere.

As I've told you elsewhere, they are merely a convenient one stop shop for a host of standard data prepared by a number of Federal govt. agencies.
1977-79 were fairly good years. Inflation was 6%-7% a year, but not much of a problem for anyone except long term lenders (during those years, the bond market was a dog). Unemployment was higher than in 1960s, but not higher than in much of the 1950s. Unemployment then was markedly lower than now. IT was definitely on the march: mainframes and minicomputers were very strong. IBM, DEC, Oracle, Unysis. Desktop systems were being born: Apple, Visicalc. Uses were being found everywhere for integrated circuits and primitive microprocessors. Old line manufacturing was in trouble, but that was true before and after the latter 1970s. I worked part of that decade for Bethlehem Steel, and can speak from experience to obsolete plant and machinery. But the overall investment in plant and equipment wasn't bad. Finally, many women that weren't working in 1970 had jobs by 1980, and the ability of the American economy to make room for many millions of married women going to work was remarked at the time.

That is the problem with the data "government agencies." Anyone who hasn't seen the bending of reporting for political purposes over the last 12 years isn't paying attention. (For a quick schooling on how those numbers fluctuate - read the day end reporting on a Friday afternoon before a three day weekend to see all the "corrections.") As for the IT economy, you are close and yes Apple did sell a very few motherboards in the 1970s, but anyone who knows the history of the PC era (and I do) knows that it was very much a 1980s phenomenon. As for your continued assertation that everything was fine in the Carter era, I guess we'll have to agree to disagree. I was more of a student of the era than a participant, but reading through the newpaper clippings of the times around the Ford and Carter administrations doesn't show that, and the fact that both Ford and Carter were one term Presidents tends to make me believe that perhaps your view was not universally held.

Since President Obama took office, there has been a net total loss of more than 7 million jobs according to the Government's own employment numbers.

In Nov. 2007, the total number of jobs in the US economy reached an all time high of 139M. The number declined to 127.3M by Jan. 2010. It has since risen to 133.7M. So the net loss of jobs to date, relative to the pre-crisis peak, has been 5.4M. Over the same period, the number of adult men (women) has risen from 104.1M (111.8M) to 108.5M (117.4M).

Consa -- thank you for providing the precise numbers. I did not have the time to research and provide them.

Well its not President Obama's fault that things haven't gotten better. The presidents have nothing really to do with the economy falling apart, greedy ******* like the Madoffs do. Greed and lack of empathy towards our fellow mankind is what's wrong. Why were the banks giving loans to people for half a milliondollar homes knowing those people couldn't afford it in the long run

You can have it one of two ways but not both: Either the 2008 recession was Bush's fault AND the failure of the economy to recover and employment to improve is Obama's fault, OR neither president has the power to really have that much of an impact on the economy. You cannot possibly have it that the 2008 recession was Bush's fault and today's lack of recovery is NOT Obama's fault. Take your choice.

President Bush had a Democrat House AND a Democrat Senate from 2006 through 2008. Obama had a Democrat Senate AND a Democrat House from 2008 through 2010. Which president was more handicapped by his opposition? Hmmm?

Caamelicious - If you think that it's all "businesses" fault, think about the fact that Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae are government entities that directly affected the mortgage mess and that we have a banking oversight committee that spents 10's of billions a year and was supposed to avoid problems like this from happening. You want to know why banks were giving loans to people who couldn't afford them? It's because a government entity not only told those banks that the government would back every loan they brought in but also told them if they denied loans to blacks, latinos, etc. they would be investigated for discrimination.

Wow angry much? All of our leaders screw up regardless of the party.

What was angry about that response? (Either likitysplits or myown.) Those are facts - every single one of them - and though I am quite capable of being sarcastic I tried hard not to be. As for "ever leader screwing up," you are right - but Obama criticised Bush without mercy for spending and abuse of power and he's spent more in 3 years than Bush did in 8 and not only didn't cancel the Patriot Act, he actually gave himself the right to kill any American anywhere without due process. (Something that the left would have howled had Bush done it.) Everything Obama claimed to be, he has proven himself to be the opposite. Promising to do one thing and working hard to do exactly the opposite is not "screwing up." It's lying and it's failure of leadership, pure and simple.

Fannie and Freddie walked away from all common sense. First, they threw away their 20th century rules limiting what kind of mortgages they could buy and repackage. Second, they invested in several hundred billion of subprime mortgage backed securities created by Wall Street. By doing this, they koshered what proved to be a suicidal line of business. Also, the Bush 2 admin tried to rein in the mortgage industry in 2005, but Barney Frank and others on Capitol Hill said "no way". The ostensible reason was that the subprime industry was putting more families into owned homes. The real reason was that Wall Street banksters were the biggest campaign contributors in the USA. The insane subprime mortgages were not initiated so much by regular banks and S&amp;Ls, but by mortgage banks, a type of business that originates mortgages and then resells them to Fannie/Freddie/Ginnie or Wall Street. Countrywide was one of the biggest and worst mortgage banks. A downpayment of at least 20% should be required to purchase any residential real estate. Otherwise, we will experience meltdown after meltdown until the end of time. It should also be possible for a borrower to negotiate a reduction in monthly payments, in exchange for the lender getting a larger share of the proceeds upon sale, as long as the resulting loan to value ratio does not exceed 80%.

What a well reasoned review of the facts Consa. It is a government that is too big that is working with Wall St. that feeds on that power and unlimited supply of money that is at the roots of this. To quote Shakespeare "A pox on both houses."

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Not only are unemployment numbers going up but new jobs available have gone down for the forth straight month, and the stock market is down.<br />
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I ask for peoples thoughts on this in current events and have received no answers , I guess people just don't care.