Numbers Mumbo Jumbo

Today’s jobs numbers seem to have given a boost to whatever side you’re on.

The number of  jobs created was a puny 103,000. Earlier in the week analysts were touting the Household Survey and ADP numbers which pointed to a jump of 297,000 jobs.  Seemed shaky to me. Those numbers rarely hit their mark and didn’t this time either. That small number of  actual jobs is not enough to lift us out of high unemployment. In the Bush years, economists expressed disappointment throughout the 50-ish month streak of  job increases in the triple digits. This number seems pathetic.

I don’t see how that few jobs could lower the unemployment rate .4 to 9.4%. Liberals will tout this drop today, pressing people to believe that Obama’s plans are working.

But others say that 6.4 million are still unemployed and that the work force shrunk by 260,000.

Why the seeming discrepancy? People may have given up looking, thus lowering the unemployment number. Some attribute the unemployment benefits expiring for long time lookers and they just gave up. Or, it could be December; an odd month with seasonality a big part of the drop.

Probably this number is a good litmus test for politics. Democrats  will rejoice at the 9.4% and Republicans will worry about the mere 103,000 added jobs. Next month’s results will prove interesting.

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