Tuesday, November 10, 2009


Automatic Earth | US unemployment is over 10%. 10.2% to be exact. Then again, looking at how these numbers are arrived at, how exact is exact? The 10.2% stat is just the U3 count, which is very favorable for any incumbent government. It's also very deceptive, since it ignores many people who are not working even if they would like to.

A reminder:

* U3 consists of "Total unemployed, as a percent of the civilian labor force."

* U6 consists of
  • U3
  • + "Discouraged workers", or those who have stopped looking for work because current economic conditions make them believe that no work is available for them.
  • + Other "marginally attached workers", or "loosely attached workers", or those who "would like" and are able to work, but have not looked for work recently.
  • + Part time workers who want to work full time, but can't due to economic reasons.
If you add all those not counted in U3 but added in U6, US unemployment has hit 17.5%. Now we're talking crisis territory. And I don't mean economic crisis, but societal crisis. You can't successfully run an economic system and society like the US has, and leave out more than 1 out of every 6 people willing and able to work.