Friday, October 2, 2009

Unemployment Rate Hits 9.8%

Figures released this morning show the highest unemployment rate since 1983. Some are putting a spin on it saying the increase was only .01% from august.

From BLS:

"Household Survey Data: Since the start of the recession in December 2007, the number of unemployed persons has increased by 7.6 million to 15.1 million, and the unemployment rate has doubled to 9.8 percent. (See table A-1.)

Unemployment rates for the major worker groups–adult men (10.3 percent), adult women (7.8 percent), teenagers (25.9 percent), whites (9.0 percent), blacks (15.4 percent), and Hispanics (12.7 percent)–showed little change in September. The unemployment rate for Asians was 7.4 percent, not seasonally adjusted. The rates for all major worker groups are much higher than at the start of the recession."

Here's another interesting tidbit:

"The preliminary estimate of the benchmark
revision indicates a downward adjustment to March 2009 total nonfarm
employment of 824,000 (0.6 percent)."

That means, of course, that another 824,000 people are unemployed that previously reported.

What does all this mean? As always, it's hard to predict the future and when this will all top out but considering the lack of economic activity and credit conditions it will take a long time to get back to the 5-6% range which is considered acceptable and normal.

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