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The Fed

Economics/Politics

Work Force Participation Down Along With Unemployment

The latest jobs report is out for November 2016 and the media is in a frenzy over the fact that the unemployment rate has fallen to a nine year low at 4.6%. However, as anyone who has a passing familiarity with the voodoo science of statistics will tell you, numbers can be made to dance to any tune you wish and, contrary to popular opinion, they often lie. And while a 4.6% unemployment rate seems at face value to be great news for the economy, it is unwise to take anything from the government at face value and that holds doubly true for statistics. When you dig a little deeper into the actual numbers, though, a much more complex and much less vehemently optimistic picture of the US labor market emerges. For instance, the work for participation rate which gauges the overall percentage of the population that is actively engaged in the work force either through employment, the search for employment, or the application for unemployment benefits fell yet… Keep Reading

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