Jobs: Normally, a drop in the unemployment rate would be a welcome sign of an economy on the mend. But in the upside-down world of Obamanomics, the jobless figure is increasingly useless, hiding more than it reveals.
In April, the unemployment rate officially declined to 8.1% from the previous month’s 8.2%, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. But you don’t have to look very hard to see that the jobs picture actually deteriorated last month.
In fact, the only reason the jobless rate didn’t climb in April is because so many people have simply quit looking for jobs and didn’t get counted as unemployed.
Last month, 342,000 people disappeared from the labor force. Had that not happened, the unemployment rate would have been 8.3%, not 8.1%.
Worse, the labor force participation rate has been on a downward slide throughout Obama’s presidency, as millions of workers have given up their fruitless job searches (see chart). That also masks the size of the unemployment problem.
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