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Economic Populist has a graph showing why the “official” unemployment rate of 9.2% should be disregarded as a disingenuous statistic intended to make the unemployment picture look better than it actually is, and why the U6 rate of 16.2%—which includes unemployed, underemployed, and those who have given up looking—is a much more accurate indicator:

“JOLTS stands for Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey. The July 12th report on May 2011 data shows there were 4.68 official unemployed people hunting for a job to every position available.

If one takes the…broader definition of unemployment, or U6, in May at 15.8%, the ratio becomes even worse, 8.28 unemployed people per each job opening for May. Bear in mind U6 jumped to 16.2% in June. Below is the graph of number of unemployed, using the broader U6 unemployment definition, per job opening.


Here’s proof:

“Some 16,837 people showed up at the local Kentucky Office of Employment & Training in the past week seeking jobs at Ford’s Louisville Assembly Plant.

The deadline was today to submit an application and a lottery tomorrow picks who gets to go on for consideration by Ford for the jobs paying $15.51 per hour. The number who’ll advance via the lottery wasn’t disclosed.

Sadly, the odds are that very few of these folks will become one of the 1,800 more workers Ford says it needs to reopens the plant in November…”

16,837 people divided by 1,800 openings comes out to roughly 9.3 applicants per job. A lot closer to 8.28 that 4.68.

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