Friday, October 8, 2010

US Unemployment Rate still at 9.6%, Payrolls plummet 95,000

Fresh from the Bureau of Labor Statistics website at

Nonfarm payroll employment “edged” down (-95,000) in September, and the unemployment rate was unchanged at 9.6 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Government employment declined (-159,000), reflecting both a drop in the number of temporary jobs for Census 2010 and job losses in local government. Private-sector payroll employment continued to trend up modestly (+64,000).

Household Survey Data

The number of unemployed persons, at 14.8 million, was essentially unchanged in September, and the unemployment rate held at 9.6 percent.

These are the last unemployment and payroll figures to be released before the November 2, 2010 mid-term elections.

Gory numbers like this are not good news for Democrats.  The US unemployment rate hasn’t been below 9.5% since January, 2009—the month Obama took office. Incumbents now have to go home and campaign in Districts and States, and explain why nearly $1 billion in “stimulus” spending did virtually nothing to curb persistent joblessness and an economy struggling to stay above water.

I was looking for the unemployment rate to increase to 9.7%.  I’ll go through some of the tables and post an update later today.

Separately yesterday, the Gallup organization released its own independent survey of households and employment.  It’s findings? Equally dismal:

Unemployment, as measured by Gallup without seasonal adjustment, increased to 10.1% in September — up sharply from 9.3% in August and 8.9% in July. Much of this increase came during the second half of the month — the unemployment rate was 9.4% in mid-September — and therefore is unlikely to be picked up in the government’s unemployment report on Friday. …

The government’s final unemployment report before the midterm elections is based on job market conditions around mid-September. Gallup’s modeling of the unemployment rate is consistent with Tuesday’s ADP report of a decline of 39,000 private-sector jobs, and indicates that the government’s national unemployment rate in September will be in the 9.6% to 9.8% range. This is based on Gallup’s mid-September measurements and the continuing decline Gallup is seeing in the U.S. workforce during 2010.

Update:  Calculated Risk does its typically excellent job charting the data and showing the real picture of how the economy is struggling.  I’m borrowing the small chart here.  Follow the link to see the big picture of how this wreckovery is unlike any other in post-WWII history.



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