Uncategorized

90,609,000 Problems (But A Job Ain’t One)

90,609,000 … That’s a big number isn’t it? And while it doesn’t get the same play in the mainstream media as America’s increasingly meaningless “official” government unemployment rate … you’d better believe this number matters. 90,609,000 is the number of Americans over the age of sixteen who were not in…

90,609,000 …

That’s a big number isn’t it? And while it doesn’t get the same play in the mainstream media as America’s increasingly meaningless “official” government unemployment rate … you’d better believe this number matters.

90,609,000 is the number of Americans over the age of sixteen who were not in the workforce last month – a new record. It’s up from 90,473,000 in August – which was also a new record.

Our guess is next month will yield a bigger number … and another record.

It wasn’t always like this: When U.S. President Barack Obama took office in January of 2009, the number of Americans outside of the labor force was 80,507,000 – meaning the U.S. workforce has shrunk by 10 million workers over his five years in office.

Scary …

Unlike most mainstream media outlets this website writes extensively about America’s labor participation rate – which tracks the percentage of the nation’s working age population that is either employed or actively searching for a job. It’s a key, overlooked data point – one which puts recent declines in the “official” unemployment rate in perspective.

This rate stood at 65.7 percent when Obama took office – but has since plummeted to a 35-year low of 63.2 percent. In fact if you apply January 2009’s labor participation rate to today – you wind up with an unemployment rate of nearly 11.5 percent.

Jobs have been created during Obama’s reign. 144,303,000 Americans were employed last month – which is roughly 2.1 million more than when Obama took office. But that employment growth is nowhere near sufficient to keep pace with America’s growing population.

Related posts

Uncategorized

Spy Apps: Balancing Privacy And Practicality

FITSForum
Murdaughs

Buster Murdaugh Files Defamation Lawsuit

Callie Lyons
Uncategorized

Murdaugh Retrial Hearing: Interview With Bill Young

Will Folks

5 comments

venomachine October 24, 2013 at 8:11 am

In the time of chimpanzees, I was a monkey.

Reply
Smirks October 24, 2013 at 8:48 am

Let’s take a look at this page, last updated in February of this year, but the labor participation rate isn’t too much lower from what it is today:

http://www.bls.gov/cps/cpsaat03.htm

Those not in the labor force…

16 and over (total): 88,310,000

16-19: 11,162,000

20-24: 6,337,000

25-54: 23,061,000

55-64: 13,608,000

65 and over: 34,142,000

16-19 are basically kids going through or just leaving high school, likely people to be working part time jobs. 20-24 likely contains a lot of college students, but also likely contains people who chose not to go to college.

25-54 and 55-64 are arguably the most important numbers because these are the ages we’d expect people to really need to be employed. This only accounts for 36,669,000 of the total 88,310,000 people.

The 65+ category is nearly equal to that, but typically those persons are eligible for retirement, whether it be a pension, their retirement savings, Social Security & Medicare, etc. If you look at the site, nearly half of the 65+ category is 75 years or older, too. 16,833,000 people 75 years or older.

Now, as mentioned earlier, as the boomers slowly shift into the 65+ category over the next 15 years, the labor participation rate is only going to get worse. There’s a lot of different effects that will have on our economy and government programs, which would lead to very lengthy discussions, but the one undeniable fact is that labor participation will continue to decline.

So, apparently there’s 90,609,000 problems, but proper contextual breakdown for a fair discussion about one key figure from the BLS report ain’t one.

Reply
CL October 24, 2013 at 9:38 am

The attached is a balanced analysis from the WP. Retiring workers is certainly a factor, but how much of one is not clear. Plus, the mere fact that one is older also does not necessarily mean they wanted to retire rather than giving up on the idea of finding work in this economy. I have at least one relative that falls into the latter description. WP cites estimates that the impact from retirement contributes from 1/4 to more than 50% of the decline. But it is abundantly clear that this is not just a retirement issue: “The participation rate for workers between ages 16 and 54 fell sharply during the recession and still hasn’t recovered. Obviously retirements can’t explain this” drop.

Plus, it is worth mentioning, as the Democrats demogague by calling anyone who opposes the debt limit increase a terrorist, the aging of our population is one of the main reasons why our debt and entitlement spending is unsustainable. It is hard to sustain a pyramid scheme without an influx of new contributors. We have a huge population approaching retirement age and are just below replacement level on our demographics.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2013/09/06/the-incredible-shrinking-labor-force-again/

Reply
Don't be a chump October 24, 2013 at 9:20 am

Don’t be a chump and get a job, get elected and live the high life instead. Tis easier to be a parasite than a worker bee.

Everyone looks up to pols more than workers anyway.

Reply
Anon. October 26, 2013 at 11:46 pm

Where’s SCDEW???

Reply

Leave a Comment