Let’s run the numbers. The federal government reports that a record 94,610,000 Americans are not in the labor force.
That’s out of a population of about 320,000,000.
But at the same time, the unemployment rate is supposed to be only 5.1 percent.
That percentage of the population would be 16,320,000.
Something doesn’t add up here.
Now, you know of course that with government figures there are all sorts of qualifications, conditions, quid pro quos and more.
But even legacy media reports, which mostly have looked at Obama’s glass as half-full, not half-empty, are raising some serious questions.
On Friday, Michael Hiltzik wrote at the Los Angeles Times that he believes even the White House, while it boasts of new jobs created, is fretting for Obama’s inability to produce economic results.
He explained the latest warning from the Obama team was from White House chief economist Jason Furman, who warned of a long-term decline in the pace of business investment.
“It’s remarkable to hear the … concern emanating from the White House,” he wrote.
It was the AP that concluded “A sagging global economy has finally caught up with the United States.”
Said the report, “Employers added just 142,000 jobs in September, and the government sharply lowered its estimate of gains in July and August by a combined 59,000. Monthly job growth averaged a mediocre 167,000 in the July-September quarter, down from 231,000 in the April-June period. The unemployment rate remained a low 5.1 percent, but only because many Americans have stopped looking for work and are no longer counted as unemployed. The proportion of adults who either have a job or are looking for one is at a 38-year low.”
At CNBC, a report about the nation’s economy cited the government’s stated unemployment rate, and then openly questioned, “But does that tell the real story?”
“Most economists look beyond the ‘main’ unemployment rate to other figures that can give a more textured view of the employment situation. On jobs day, the Bureau of Labor Statistics puts out a slew of figures, each of which provide their own view of the economy. One of those figures is the U-6 rate. Many economists look to the U-6 rather than the main unemployment rate (also know as the U-3). The BLS defines U-6 as ‘total unemployed, plus all persons marginally attached to the labor force, plus total employed part time for economic reasons, as a percent of the civilian labor force,’ plus all marginally attached workers.”
The accompanying chart reveals THAT unemployment rate never has been as low as 7.5 percent since 2005, and peaked at about 17 percent in 2010 after Obama’s policies were beginning to kick in. Even now, it’s at 10 percent.
Breitbart reported Friday that it was the second month in a row that “Americans not in the labor force exceeded 94 million.”
“In other words they were neither employed nor had made specific efforts to find work in the prior four weeks,” the report said. That was an increase of 579,000 from August.
The nation’s labor force now involves only about 62 percent of the nation’s residents.
This report said “In total 148,800,000 people were employed last month, 7,915,000 were unemployed, and 5,955,000 people were looking for a job.”
CNS reported, “Last month, 56,647,000 women 16 and older were not in the labor force, an increase of 394,000 from August and up 1,066,000 from September 2014. That number also rose for men: In September, 32,387,000 men age 20 and older were not in the labor force, up 202,000 from August and an increase of 804,000 from September 2014.”
Stunningly, the Washington Examiner said, “‘Foreign-born’ jobs numbers increased by 14,000, while those for ‘native-born’ Americans fell off a cliff, by 262,000. Over the past three months, the job numbers for native-born have dropped by nearly 1 million, exactly the number of jobs President Obama promised to add when he ran for re-election in 2012.”
At Marketwatch was the notation that “global risk appetite dropped to ‘panic’ levels for the first time since January 2012.”
“That was back when investors feared a breakup of the euro bloc, grappled with unsustainably high sovereign borrowing costs and freaking out about the spillover from Greece,” the report said. “Before that, the index reached panic state around the onset of the 2008 financial crisis, after the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks on the U.S., during the dotcom bubble and after Black Monday in 1987. Get the picture?”