Why the Jobs Situation Is Worse Than It Looks

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    Jun 22, 2011 3:55 PM GMT
    Another indication that whatever policymakers are doing, just isn't working. Because some of the underlying issues were never dealt with, things are set to get worse as the problems were only pushed out like underwater mortgage relief.

    http://www.usnews.com/opinion/mzuckerman/articles/2011/06/20/why-the-jobs-situation-is-worse-than-it-looks

    The Great Recession has now earned the dubious right of being compared to the Great Depression. In the face of the most stimulative fiscal and monetary policies in our history, we have experienced the loss of over 7 million jobs, wiping out every job gained since the year 2000. From the moment the Obama administration came into office, there have been no net increases in full-time jobs, only in part-time jobs. This is contrary to all previous recessions. Employers are not recalling the workers they laid off from full-time employment.


    The real job losses are greater than the estimate of 7.5 million. They are closer to 10.5 million, as 3 million people have stopped looking for work. Equally troublesome is the lower labor participation rate; some 5 million jobs have vanished from manufacturing, long America's greatest strength. Just think: Total payrolls today amount to 131 million, but this figure is lower than it was at the beginning of the year 2000, even though our population has grown by nearly 30 million.

    The most recent statistics are unsettling and dismaying, despite the increase of 54,000 jobs in the May numbers. Nonagricultural full-time employment actually fell by 142,000, on top of the 291,000 decline the preceding month. Half of the new jobs created are in temporary help agencies, as firms resist hiring full-time workers.

    Today, over 14 million people are unemployed. We now have more idle men and women than at any time since the Great Depression. Nearly seven people in the labor pool compete for every job opening. Hiring announcements have plunged to 10,248 in May, down from 59,648 in April. Hiring is now 17 percent lower than the lowest level in the 2001-02 downturn. One fifth of all men of prime working age are not getting up and going to work. Equally disturbing is that the number of people unemployed for six months or longer grew 361,000 to 6.2 million, increasing their share of the unemployed to 45.1 percent. We face the specter that long-term unemployment is becoming structural and not just cyclical, raising the risk that the jobless will lose their skills and become permanently unemployable.

    Don't pay too much attention to the headline unemployment rate of 9.1 percent. It is scary enough, but it is a gloss on the reality. These numbers do not include the millions who have stopped looking for a job or who are working part time but would work full time if a position were available. And they count only those people who have actively applied for a job within the last four weeks.

    Include those others and the real number is a nasty 16 percent. The 16 percent includes 8.5 million part-timers who want to work full time (which is double the historical norm) and those who have applied for a job within the last six months, including many of the long-term unemployed. And this 16 percent does not take into account the discouraged workers who have left the labor force. The fact is that the longer duration of six months is the more relevant testing period since the mean duration of unemployment is now 39.7 weeks, an increase from 37.1 weeks in February.
  • rnch

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    Jun 22, 2011 3:59 PM GMT
    where's all the JOBS the GOP promised us?




    WHERE?
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    Jun 22, 2011 4:01 PM GMT
    Sounds like time for a public works administration.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 22, 2011 4:03 PM GMT
    rnch saidwhere's all the JOBS the GOP promised us?




    WHERE?


    What about the ones promised by the Obama Administration?
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    Jun 22, 2011 4:03 PM GMT
    Christian73 saidSounds like time for a public works administration.


    Ask Christine Romer how that worked out the last time.
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    Jun 22, 2011 4:04 PM GMT
    riddler78 said
    Christian73 saidSounds like time for a public works administration.


    Ask Christine Romer how that worked out the last time.


    I'm not really interested in what Christine Romer thinks.
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    Jun 22, 2011 4:05 PM GMT
    Christian73 said
    riddler78 said
    Christian73 saidSounds like time for a public works administration.


    Ask Christine Romer how that worked out the last time.


    I'm not really interested in what Christine Romer thinks.


    Right cuz you are so much more qualified and knowledgeable about these things than one of the foremost experts in the Great Depression and one of the primary reasons she was previously selected as CEA chair by the Obama Adminstration.
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    Jun 22, 2011 4:11 PM GMT
    riddler78 said
    Christian73 said
    riddler78 said
    Christian73 saidSounds like time for a public works administration.


    Ask Christine Romer how that worked out the last time.


    I'm not really interested in what Christine Romer thinks.


    Right cuz you are so much more qualified and knowledgeable about these things than one of the foremost experts in the Great Depression and one of the primary reasons she was previously selected as CEA chair by the Obama Adminstration.


    Nope. It's because her perspective is that of a neocon/Blue Dog and as you've proven over and over again, a trained mind can make numbers say almost anything.
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    Jun 22, 2011 4:18 PM GMT
    Christian73 said
    riddler78 said
    Christian73 said
    riddler78 said
    Christian73 saidSounds like time for a public works administration.


    Ask Christine Romer how that worked out the last time.


    I'm not really interested in what Christine Romer thinks.


    Right cuz you are so much more qualified and knowledgeable about these things than one of the foremost experts in the Great Depression and one of the primary reasons she was previously selected as CEA chair by the Obama Adminstration.


    Nope. It's because her perspective is that of a neocon/Blue Dog and as you've proven over and over again, a trained mind can make numbers say almost anything.


    Yes, because your untrained mind is so much better at discerning the difference.