Nonfarm payroll employment rose by 244,000 in April, and the unemployment rate edged up to 9.0 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Job gains occurred in several service providing industries, manufacturing, and mining.
That sounds good. The unemployment rate edged up as allegedly more people came back into the workforce:
Oh, and they revised last month up by 41,000 jobs too.
So what’s going on with the household data?
The rate of change remains positive – but annualized (that is, removing seasonal variations) it is flagging, although remaining in positive territory.
The claim in the mainstream media is that “more people are re-entering the workforce and looking for work.” Really? When why is the “Not In Labor Force” number rising?
and why is the rate (not-in-labor force number as compared against population) flat and not falling?
The employment rate of the population is showing the same seasonal bounce we had last year but nothing more – it’s bouncing along the bottom:
And finally, no, employment in terms of population is not improving. Here it is folks, and that indicator has now turned down once again. This indicator, I remind you, is the one that matters in terms of the government being able to actually fund operations via tax collection. This indicator must be positive in order for government funding capacity to improve.
Enjoy the rally today on the hype – and false hope.