Archives for BLS data

Job News December

 News summary, from the Bureau of Labor and Statistics (12/13)

The national unemployment rate decreased significantly from 7.3% to 7.0% with 10.9 million unemployed.  The number of persons experiencing long spells of unemployment (over a year) increased slightly by 9,000 people to 2.8 million. 4.1 million individuals had been unemployed for 6 months or more in November, a slight increase of 3,000 over the month, and a huge decrease of 718,000 over the past 12 months. That means about 35% of those who became unemployed 6 months ago are still unemployed today. They are, however, competing with 400,000 fewer job seekers than they were in July when the unemployment rate was 7.6% and 11.8 million were unemployed.


The average number of weeks that job seekers are staying unemployed has increased over the month to 37.2, which is still about a week and half shorter than last year, while the median increased to 17 weeks. Such a difference may reflect that for most industries and geographies, job seekers may be able to transition within five to six months. However, about 23% of job seekers may not be able to effectively execute a transition campaign or may be in adversely impacted geographies or shrinking markets, creating challenges to transitioning that lead to extremely long spells of unemployment.

Is Yahoo deleting my post or the AP? Did I strike a nerve?

Twice, I have left the following comment on this article, and twice I could not go back and find it, though it was confirmed posted. Is someone deleting it? I had read the comment guidelines and I did not violate them. I wonder if they really didn’t have a credible source for the data they so blithely report inaccurately and they didn’t want to keep a comment that called BS on them.

COMMENT was as follows:

“The unemployment rate fell to 8.1 percent from 8.3 percent in July. But that was only because more people gave up looking for jobs.”

368,000 is not a large enough number to impact the unemployment rate by .2%, so it obviously is not solely or even primarily responsible for the drop.

What is your source and why don’t you name it?

Here are the real numbers:

These show that there are actually fewer discouraged workers than there were a year ago as well as fewer people who did not look for work in the past 4 weeks “for reasons such as thinks no work available, could not find work, lacks schooling or training, employer thinks too young or old, and other types of discrimination.”

The total number of people not in the labor force did go up, but that is mostly attributed to people who have not looked for work in the past 4 weeks “for such reasons as school or family responsibilities, ill health, and transportation problems, as well as a number for whom reason for nonparticipation was not determined.”

This kind of “doom and gloom” misinterpretation of data is a contributing factor of a discouraged workforce.  People who are out of work have a hard enough time getting up in the morning to do what needs to be done to get a job without the media telling them how difficult or impossible it is. To be part of the solution, highlight more stories about who is getting jobs (there are still plenty) so that people can follow their example.

FACT: There are fewer jobs available than people who need them. But there are also few people who adhere to the best practices of job transitioning, so it is actually quite easy to stand out from the masses.  We teach people how and they cut their job search in half.  *See our ROI calculator on the bottom of this page.