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Unemployment Drops To 10%, Job Losses Lowest Of Recession


Unemployment Line

Nobody’s signing “Happy Days Are Here Again,” but any significant downward movement in the unemployment rate is reason for some early holiday cheer. And there’s more good news beyond this. I’ll share a chart that shows this after the numbers.

From WSJ:

U.S. job losses in November posted the smallest drop since the start of the recession and the unemployment rate unexpectedly declined, a sign the labor market is finally healing as the economy recovers.

Nonfarm payrolls fell by just 11,000 last month, slowing down from a downwardly revised 111,000 drop seen in October, as the recovery encouraged some companies to retain workers, the Labor Department said Friday.

Okay, now here’s a graph (with some notations from me) to illustrate how significant this is and how it’s even more evidence that we’re pulling out of this mess…

Chart of Unemployment Rate November 2009

More from WSJ about how some sectors are recovering…

Employment in the service sector — the main source of U.S. jobs — rose by 58,000 in November. But that was more than offset by manufacturing companies shedding 41,000 jobs and construction companies cutting 27,000.

Health-care employment continued to rise in November, by 21,000. The industry has added 613,000 jobs since the recession began at the end of 2007.

And one last bright spot…

Friday’s report showed that average hourly earnings rose by 0.1%, or $0.01, to $18.74.

More people are employed and we’re making more money.

Win, win.

PS – BTW, if you’re going to talk to me about U6 or the underemployment rate, you better also explain why it was ignored for 8 years under Bush as it skyrocketed past 15% in 2008. In short, don’t get U6 religion now just because a Dem is in office.