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November 05, 2010

October 2010 Unemployment Rate - Not Much Change

The unemployment rate numbers were released today by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The U-3 unemployment rate was 9.6% - unchanged from the previous 2 months. There are some encouraging signs, like the addition of 151K nonfarm jobs, but the number of employed people has only increased by 800K in the past year. Based on typical growth in the labor pool, that number had to increase by ~1.8 million to just stay even.

The U-6 measure of unemployment actually dropped a tenth of a point to 17%, due to the 3% drop in the number of people unwillingly employed part-time (a category that saw large increases over the past couple of months). The fact that over 300K unhappy part-timers were absorbed into other categories without increasing the U-3 or U-6 rates makes this a stronger employment report than we've had for the past several months.

But not much stronger.

After the 5th month in a row of either 9.5% or 9.6% unemployment, I'm falling asleep when I update The Chart. So don't be surprised if you find drool marks among the data points. In any case, here you go:

Stimulus-vs-unemployment-October2010-dotsSmall.gif

The question of the day: "Is this bad enough to give Geithner paranoia around buses?" Yeah, I think as soon as Obama finds someone willing to take his spot, Geithner's going to assume his new career as a speed bump.



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posted by Geoff at 09:27 AM

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