By Tom Rhodes, 8/4/2012
Job numbers came out and unemployment is widely reported to have gotten slightly worse to 8.5%. That is a totally bogus number that doesn’t represent reality. Lucky for us the government does report real usable data, they and the press just choose to report manipulated skewed data to placate the masses.
The data we should be looking at is the percentage of working age people employed vs. population of working age people. This is called the employment-to-population ratio or EPR. The new numbers show that the EPR is down to 58.2% from 58.4%. This number is calculated by taking the total number of employed people and dividing by the number of individuals in working-age, and multiplying by 100.
Here is the Bureau of Labor Statistics EPR graph for the last decade.
What the 54.2% EPR means is that 582 of every 1000 working aged people has a job, or 458 of every working age person is not working. This does not include children or retirees. Compared to the EPR of 63.4% in December 2006 and we see we have a problem. What’s worse, is the 140,000 or so new jobs created last month is backwards, and not enough to maintain current employment levels; hence the increase in the official but bogus unemployment stat of 8.3%.
Our average working age population growth rate is around 0.2% per month. So just to keep employment levels stable we need around a quarter of a million new jobs every month. The official end to the recession was June 2009, since then we’ve only averaged a little less about 110,000 new jobs per month, this is less than half the new jobs we need every month just to maintain our current EPR. The result is that we are now in the 41st month of over 8% unemployment, and the reality that since June 2009 the EPR has dropped from 59.4% to 58.2%. So although there have been new jobs created, they haven’t even kept pace with the increase in our working age population.
John Williams’ Shadow Stats, shows unemployment and other government stats, calculating them the way they used to be calculated, and compares them to the bogus numbers the government now reports. Here’s their graph of Unemployment numbers.
Right now employment numbers suck. The new American Dream is “I got a job!” and we cannot expect our children to do as well as we did.