The number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits unexpectedly rose last week, government data on Thursday showed, suggesting persistent weakness in the labour market after stumbling badly in recent months.
"Quick! Kick some more people off the extended benefits so we can say the jobless numbers are down again!" -- Official White Horse Souse (ahem) The official jobless rate is a calculated fiction subject to election-year wishful thinking. The official jobless figure is calculated from people just now filing for unemployment and people still receiving such benefits and looking for work. But it does not include the 86 million Americans who have been looking for work so long they have exhausted all possible benefits. These are America's "invisible" unemployed, ignored as a major political embarrassment. The US government admits to there being 12.5 million "visible" unemployed, which together with the invisible means 94.5 million Americans are available to work but do not have a job. Total US population is 330 million. But 24% of those are young people not eligible to work. And 13 percent are retired. So the total population of available workers in the United States is 100% - (24% + 13%) = 63% of 330 million people, or 207 million workers. And with 94.5 million workers not working, the true jobless rate in the US right now is 45%, not the 8% the media keeps propagandizing you about.