Unemployment Numbers Due Out Friday
No Significant Changes Anticipated
By Dell Hill
H/T - Ed Morrissey @ HotAir
unemployment numbers are due out tomorrow (Friday) and the prediction
from upon high is that initial claims for unemployment benefits will
drop by 9,000. In a country of 310,000,000 citizens, 9,000 is less than
a drop in the bucket. Government officials love to use those smaller
numbers because there’s something seriously negative about telling the
As of Thursday at noon, 25,406,771
Americans were unemployed. That’s the number that strikes home with a
vengeance. Of course the government won’t report that number either.
They refuse to count those workers who have given up searching for work
- and, of course, they’re still unemployed - but it’s all in how you
juggle the formula to reach the desired results.
Ed Morrissey at HotAir loves to crunch the numbers. I hate it. So let’s let Ed do the honors this week.
“In the week ending October 29, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims
was 397,000, a decrease of 9,000 from the previous week’s revised
figure of 406,000. The 4-week moving average was 404,500, a decrease of
2,000 from the previous week’s revised average of 406,500.
The advance seasonally adjusted insured unemployment rate was 2.9 percent for the week ending October 22, unchanged from the prior week’s unrevised rate.
The advance number for seasonally adjusted insured unemployment
during the week ending October 22 was 3,683,000, a decrease of 15,000
from the preceding week’s revised level of 3,698,000. The 4-week moving
average was 3,703,250, a decrease of 10,500 from the preceding week’s
revised average of 3,713,750.
isn’t much of a change, but it does go in the right direction. Two
states didn’t get their reports to the Department of Labor on time for
today’s figures, though (Connecticut and Oklahoma), and the Department
of Labor ended up estimating their figures instead. That could mean a
more significant revision next week, but probably not by a wide amount
considering population sizes in both states.
Although the 400K level is certainly a psychological (or at least journalistic) threshold, Reuters actually does well to keep the proper perspective on the significance of this change:
U.S. claims for unemployment benefits fell below 400,000 last week for
the first time in five weeks and a trend reading also edged lower,
suggesting a modest improvement in the still-moribund labor market.
claims for state unemployment benefits dropped by 9,000 in the week
ending October 29 to a seasonally adjusted 397,000, theLabor Department
said on Thursday. The government raised slightly its estimate for claims
filed during the prior week to 406,000.
polled by Reuters had forecast claims edging down to 400,000 from the
previously reported 402,000. … The four-week moving average of claims,
considered a better measure of labor market trends, fell 2,000 to
It’s been a few weeks since we’ve seen the 400K Myth
appear in any Reuters report. I’d call that progress. They certainly
had an opening in these numbers to claim that the new level signaled
stable job growth, but passed.”
the past several months - nearly a year, in fact - there has been very
little change in the Unemployment numbers and most economists predict
that trend to continue at through election day 2012.
Barack Obama is defeated in his re-election bid you’ll see an almost
immediate, significant drop in unemployment. If the Democrats should
lose control of the Senate - and it’s possible - the entire nation will
be headed back to work no later than January, 2013. Should Obama win
re-election, plan on a minimum of four more years of very high
unemployment. It’s as simple as that.