Grim December unemployment news

An economy falling freely towards an unknown nadir

The most recent Bureau of Labor Statistics report tells us that:

Nonfarm payroll employment declined sharply in December, and the unemployment rate rose from 6.8 to 7.2 percent, the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the U.S. Department of Labor reported today. Payroll employment fell by 524,000 over the month and by 1.9 million over the last 4 months of 2008. In December, job losses were large and widespread across most major industry sectors.

The New York Times adds a few facts to the BLS report:

The 7.2 percent was the highest unemployment rate since January 1993, when the country was still shaking off a jobless recovery from the 1990-91 recession. The loss in total jobs for 2008 was the largest since 1945.

The Wall Street Journal predicts that the Federal Reserve will feel compelled to combat the problem by continuing the inflationary strategy it has adopted.

Shadow Stats, it is worth noting here, puts its alternate employment rate at nearly 18% for December:

No comments: