Friday, November 30, 2012
NOT IN THE LABOR FORCE (still increasing)
By Reginald Kaigler (DEMCAD)
As many of you know, the Bureau of Labor Statistics' jobless claims soared in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. Last week, it reportedly dropped 21,000 to 393,000 new initial claims for unemployment. The media storyline is that sense the aftermath of the storm is easing, the jobless claims are dropping. The problem is that much of the increase in joblessness isn't even coming from New York and New Jersey. What's interesting is that many of the states that reported decreases weren't even in the affect area.
Read more about the jobless claims
U.S. Pending home sales 5.2% soared in October. If this is accurate, this maybe a sign that the housing market has found its bottom. What grabbed my attention was the stark contrast between regions.
Pending home sales in the Midwest and South rose 15.6 percent and 5.5 percent, respectively, while the West and the Northeast dropped by 1.1 percent and 0.1 percent, respectively. As a guy living in the Midwest, I can tell you that there are so many people leaving their homes for rentals (and other states) that I suspect a disproportional amount of these sales are going to rentals.
Read more about Housing Sales
Although, the housing sales are encouraging, I'm still concerned about wages, the quality of employment an the number of Americans still on food stamps. As of August 2012, we had a record 47.1 million Americans collecting food stamps. Some people have argued that much the increase is explained by the Obama's administration easing of the requirements. But the fact of the matter is that historically, we only see large increases in food stamp participation during recessions and hard economic times. The number soar in late 2008 before Obama even entered the Oval Office.
Between August 2011 and August 2012, there was a 1.6 million increase in the amount of Americans receiving food stamps. It's been climbing for 4 straight years.
The government has been able to artificially lower the unemployment rate by excluding the millions of Americans who have given up looking for work because there is no real work. The funny that is that the government's NOT IN THE LABOR FORCE continues to raise. Because people can't find work.
So all of the spin in the world won't change what is now obvious to anyone who is looking. This country is in an economic depression.