The Real Unemployment and Underemployment Numbers

by | Mar 5, 2010 | Headline News | 4 comments

Do you LOVE America?


    unemployment_line_tallahassee1Source: Washington Post / Newsweek   |    Tallahasee, FL Unemployment Benefits Office

    Bloomberg reports that Payrolls in U.S. Fell 36,000; Unemployment at 9.7% :

    The U.S. unemployment rate held at 9.7 percent and payrolls fell less than forecast, indicating the labor market strengthened even as East Coast snowstorms forced some employers to temporarily close.

    All looks well if we consider just the “unemployment” rate, but buried in the tenth paragraph of the article is what the government refers to as the “U-6” unemployment number, which is not looking so good:

    The so-called underemployment rate — which includes part- time workers who’d prefer a full-time position and people who want work but have given up looking — rose to 16.8 percent from 16.5 percent.

    Naturally, the mainstream media will report only the U-3 unemployment rate, and because we just went through a very difficult winter season, this will be touted as a huge plus and proof of our economic stability.

    The fact is, as the underemployment number shows, people are still losing their jobs. Those who have given up because there are no jobs in the area in which they live are considered underemployed, not unemployed. And let’s not forget the hundreds of thousands who continue to fall completely off of the unemployed and underemployed counts because they are no longer collecting benefits – these people, according to the governments numbers, no longer exist.

    For an even more accurate unemployment reading, we direct viewers to John Williams’ Shadow Stats. According to Mr. Williams, we did see an uptick in overall unemployment and are currently nearing 22%. That’s ONE in FIVE Americans that are currently without work.

    There simply cannot be any recovery until we have real, sustainable job creation, as well as a return to normal credit lending. None of these two things are happening – and they will not happen any time soon because we have yet to cleanse the system of all the bad debt that has been built up over the last several decades.

    In a recent interview, Dr. Marc Faber suggested that he foresees an unemployment (U-3) rate of around 15% some time in the future. If this is the case, then we can probably project a real unemployment rate of 25% to 30% some time between now and 2015.

    Does anyone still think we are out of this recession?


    It Took 22 Years to Get to This Point

    Gold has been the right asset with which to save your funds in this millennium that began 23 years ago.

    Free Exclusive Report
    The inevitable Breakout – The two w’s

      Related Articles


      Join the conversation!

      It’s 100% free and your personal information will never be sold or shared online.


      1. I am soooo tired of the “Good news Gerties” who seem to think they can make everything all right if they just don’t say the bad news out loud…or they think we’re all too dumb to know or care…or all of the above!!! Are they just keeping us in the dark til they finish their devious plans for this country or are they crazy enough to believe that somehow someone is gonna be able to make all this go away???  Science says that for every action there is an equal, opposite reaction…we’re about to see the reaction and it’s gonna be a doozie!!

      2. IMO, a ShadowStats 6-mo subscription for $89 is a great value.  All the real numbers, and honest analysis all the time.  No BS.  John Williams is the man.

      3. Perception if everything. Everyone here knows we won’t emerge from this recession for years (perhaps a decade or more), but that doesn’t stop the government from peddling misinformation to keep the other 95% of the public confused and/or misguided.

        Ask anyone what qualifies a recession. Out of the few intelligent responses you get, most of them will be about two consecutive quarters of declining GDP. Likewise, to come out of the recession, we’ll need two consecutive quarters of increasing GDP. Well, official 4th quarter 2009 GDP increase was 5.7%, on the heels of an official 3rd quarter 2009 GDP increase of 3.5%. Therefore, we are officially out of the recession!!

        Never mind that these numbers will get revised down in the coming months. What matters is the nominal increase will keep the 95% happy and spending. That’s all. They have nothing left in their bag of tricks other than mind control.

        I see a scenario where we could have 15% unemployment and still have a rising GDP. Under those conditions are we still in a recession? Does it even matter anymore what it’s called? BTW I really doubt we’ll see officially 15% because people will just keep dropping off the rolls and not be counted. I think at most we’ll see 10.5% U-3 but perhaps 20-21% U6 and 28-30% Shadowstats figures. As long as they keep pumping U-3 and GDP is up nothing’s gonna change except more incremental bleeding on Main Street.

      4. First, the payroll #s did not suggest the labor market has strengthened, but rather weakened less than expected.  Second, spewing a headline # such as 17% U-6 employment doesn’t really serve any purpose unless there’s a baseline # to compare to.  But since the naysayers are interested only in convincing people that they’re right (despite the markets saying they’re wrong), this article won’t tell you that even during the boom times, the U-6 #s ranged between 8 to 10%.  Of course, no one really cared back then when bears were screaming “how can we have growth when “real” unemployment is 10%!

      Commenting Policy:

      Some comments on this web site are automatically moderated through our Spam protection systems. Please be patient if your comment isn’t immediately available. We’re not trying to censor you, the system just wants to make sure you’re not a robot posting random spam.

      This website thrives because of its community. While we support lively debates and understand that people get excited, frustrated or angry at times, we ask that the conversation remain civil. Racism, to include any religious affiliation, will not be tolerated on this site, including the disparagement of people in the comments section.