CNN is trying mightily – and shamelessly – to spin this as a positive, proudly proclaiming that unemployment is somehow showing positive signs. Why the spin?
The number of Americans filing initial unemployment claims fell sharply last week, while those filing ongoing claims rose to another all-time high, according to government data released Thursday.
There were 565,000 initial jobless claims filed in the week ended July 4, down 52,000 from a revised 617,000 the previous week, the Labor Department said.
It was the lowest number since January and was below the consensus estimate of 603,000 from economists surveyed by Briefing.com.
The real problem here is the sheer size of the number of people drawing unemployment right now. Just under 7 million Americans.
On a non-seasonally adjusted basis, initial claims were 577,506.
“The improvement in first week of July was exaggerated by the timing of plant closures,” Vitner said. “This is something we’re going to be dealing with throughout the month.”
Meanwhile, the number of people requesting continued jobless benefits rose to a record high, indicating that the labor market remains weak.
The government said continuing claims rose to 6,883,000 in the week ended June 27, the most recent data available.
That’s an increase of 159,000 from the previous week’s revised total of 6,724,000 and was the highest reading since the Labor Department began keeping records in 1967.
If the number of people who have quit looking for work or who are badly underemployed is factored in we are looking at something like 11 million or more unemployed in this country. In fact, there may be more people out of work now than there were at the height of the Great Depression – although that number is a smaller percentage of the total population now. (It’s hard getting any real numbers for that.)
More than half a million people lost jobs in just the past week – that is pretty hard to spin positive, folks, despite CNN’s shameless attempt. (Incidentally, CNN has toned down its initial positive spin since I first read this article this afternoon. I guess the first pass was a little too shameless.)
This is not an inherited disaster, either. These numbers are a direct result of Obama’s and the Democrats in Congress and their antics since taking power. The main engine of jobs in this country are small businesses – and the owners of those small businesses are being routinely warned that they are the “rich” and will be subjected to confiscatory taxation in the near future.
Are you really surprised that they do not want to lay out any money creating jobs right now? Are you surprised that they are shrinking their businesses and their incomes?
This is a very, very real problem now.