Free Markets, Free People

Unemployment rate rises to 8.2%

As a follow up to the post below, another indication of how anemic our recovery is can be found in the “official” unemployment numbers.  This week it rose .1% to 8.2%.  I don’t have to belabor the fact that the number is a real lowball of the true unemployment rate.  Suffice it to say, regardless of the number, the trend this month has been to the negative:

The American jobs engine hit stall speed in May, with the economy adding just 69,000 new jobs while the unemployment rate climbed to 8.2 percent.

As another summertime swoon looms, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that job creation missed economist estimates for 158,000 new positions and the jobless rate rose for the first time in nearly a year.

Labor force participation remains near 30-year lows though incrementally better than last month, rising to 63.8 percent.

The unemployment rate that counts discouraged workers rose as well, swelling to 14.8 percent form 14.5 percent in April.

To put it succinctly, the employment picture sucks and doesn’t at all appear to be getting better.  Last months 115,000 new jobs has been revised down to 77,000 .  Couple all of that with what we see happening in the rest of the world and it paints a pretty bleak economic picture for at least the near future.

James Pethokoukis lays out some of that picture for you:

– 1Q GDP was revised down to 1.9% from 2.2%. The previous four GDP quarters of Obama recovery: 0.4%, 1.3%, 1.8%, 3.0%. Keep in mind that research from the Federal Reserve finds that that since 1947, when two-quarter annualized real GDP growth falls below 2 percent, recession follows within a year 48 percent of the time. (And when year-over-year real GDP growth falls below 2 percent, recession follows within a year 70 percent of the time.)

– Initial claims for state unemployment benefits rose 10,000 to a seasonally adjusted 383,000. Claims have now risen in seven of the past eight weeks. The four-week moving average for new claims increased 3,750 to 374,500.


– Job cuts jumped by 53%  in May from April in the United States, according to a report by consultancy firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas. CNBC also notes that “employers announced plans to cut 61,887 staff from their payrolls in May, 67 percent more than in the same month of last year. The figure represents the most job cuts since last September.”

– The  Rasmussen Consumer Index find that 59% think the U.S. is currently in a recession.

Politically, this isn’t at all good news for an incumbent President seeking another term.  With 14.8 percent of the workforce out of work or “discouraged”, the conventional wisdom says they’re unlikely to think signing on for another 4 years of this is worth it.  And the economy, at this moment, and under his leadership, is showing no indication the next 4 years will be any different than these past 4 years.

That’s just ground truth for all the wishful thinkers out there on the left.


Twitter: @McQandO

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18 Responses to Unemployment rate rises to 8.2%

  • Even hours worked was down, too.
    The swirling grows more rapid…

  • Wishful thinking on the left?  Why would they do that when it is clearly Bush’s fault?  /snark

  • When does Erb pop by to tell us we’re CLEARLY in recovery?

  • Dang just think how bad it would be if The One and Sheriff Joe had not made JOBS their No. 1 priority three years ago.
    “The unemployment rate that counts discouraged workers rose as well, swelling to 14.8 percent form 14.5 percent in April.”
    I guess it’s good news for the White House that the service industry has been hiring for summer jobs.  Without that little spike the jobs report would have been really bad.

    • But Labor Secretary Hilda Solis, yet another unqualified affirmative action hire of this Administration, tells us that “May is always bad” .. obviously forgetting that these are the seasonally adjusted numbers.

      • “obviously forgetting…”
        You have to know something before you forget it.

  • “So we’ve got the growth part of it figured out — if we can get the green part of it actually figured out as well,” Clinton said yesterday in an address before Denmark’s Parliament. The audience laughed, even though they didn’t know yet that the unemployment rate would rise in today’s report to 8.2 percent.

    Now I can sleep at night

  • Question: does anyone here think that the seeming trend of prominent Deemocrats speaking well of Bain and/or Mittens signal the preference cascade we mentioned a while back?

    • No, to my mind that only bespeaks to the preference cascade the Dems have to not alienating more Wall Street money. I don’t think you’ll see mass evidence of a preference cascade openly – not when you can get tarred as a racist, put on an enemies list, or possibly SWATTED as a result. But if you look carefully and put 2 and 2 together, yes you can see it coming.

  • Every person has an affect on the economy. We, small ‘c’ conservatives, banter amongst ourselves, thereby collectively influencing those lives we touch. If I am unhappy about being driven off a cliff by a Statist Jack-wagon, I might not indulge myself in extra goods and services, knowing full well it weakens said Jack Wagons grip on power. When all my compatriots are of the same mind, we move mountains. What Barry doesn’t grasp is, much of what is turning red under his rein is result of massive disapproval of his leadership. Folks voting with their purses. We can, and will, strangle his presidency. We the People have Power. However, that power is no good if you don’t Use it.

  • I went over to check out how the progressosphere is taking the jobs numbers.
    Well, denial isn’t just a river in Egypt.
    But, I came away looking for the brother of Star Trek’s Spock .. the one who said “Share your pain,” Sybok, in the not so much liked Star Trek V: The Final Frontier (AKA Star Trek: the Search for God) (most notable quote: “What does God need with a starship?“).
    These folks have lots of real hate. They hate mostly the Republican Leadership in the House, and their perceived obstructionism of yet even more spending (as if $4 trillion of deficit spending isn’t enough). They really need to get beyond their hate and their almost religious regurgitation of Obama/DNC talking points.
    They need a Sybok, not a Spock.

    • Neo, while you were checking out the progressosphere, did you come across much mention of the evil CEO’s making money and the evil corporations making record profits while not hiring?  Especially since hiring would help Obama’s employment situation.
      It’s a vast right wing conspiracy – Keep hiring at a minimum to hurt Obama.