Chrisforliberty's Blog

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Don’t Believe The Unemployment Statistics

with 2 comments

(Originally published January 2009, updated August 5, 2010)

How far off is the real number of unemployed to the “official” number? You have to look deep into the Bureau of Labor Statistics monthly report to find this out. Buried in footnote U-6 of Table A-15 (page 26) of the monthly report is a rate of unemployment that comes pretty close to the real rate. The official rate (U-3)  is 9.5%; the actual number of people out of work and who want to work is 16.5%.

By comparison, the unemployment numbers for January 2009 was official unemployment rate of 7.6%. The real rate was 13.9%.  Keep in mind that contractors such as most construction workers and truck drivers aren’t counted and millions in those industries have been hit with job losses since the “recession” began in December 2007. So we are actually looking at closer to 20%-25%. This would translate to around 30 million people either unemployed, under employed or out of work but simply not counted because of their “non-employee” status.

The last time the rate was this high was in the 1930’s.  Of course, keep in mind that only white men were counted. So the real rate would have been around 50% if women and minorities were counted. The total population of the U.S. was around 123 million people. Numerically speaking, around the same number of people were out of work then as now. The unemployment rate was in double digits every year between 1931-1942 and was only reduced because the U.S. was gearing up for a war-time economy that would eventually kill as many as 60 million people.

So it didn’t matter whether Bush or Obama was in the White House. The system is designed this way and this system can be attributed to upstanding folks like John Rockefeller, J.P. Morgan and Nelson Aldrich.

Written by chrisforliberty

July 29, 2010 at 1:09 am

2 Responses

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  1. […] and inevitably future bubbles and collapses. The ‘Fed’ does not stabilize the economy. If so, why did the Great Depression among other economic calamities occur on their watch? Something to think […]

  2. It’s the uncounted folk that are really hurting because they aren’t on unemployment or they’re working for a hundred bucks a week doing whatever they can find to do. It’s rough out there. I’ve been without a regular job almost since the Democrats came into power. My career field got hit hard. We had higher demand and lower income so we responded by cutting paid hands and working almost entirely with volunteers.

    My field – faith-based nonprofits. We’re feeding the folks that aren’t being counted, helping them find some kind of job-any job and taking care of what the government doesn’t think is important.

    So much for the kindness of socialism.


    Tom King

    October 8, 2010 at 12:38 am

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