Monday, January 11, 2010

The Scary Truth About Unemployment in the US

The latest employment data for December 2009 is scary in the extreme. I found this chart in CalculatedRisk comparing the percent job losses for every recession since World War II. According to CalculatedRisk (10 Jan 2010):
This graph shows the job losses from the start of the employment recession, in percentage terms (as opposed to the number of jobs lost). The current employment recession is the worst recession since WWII in percentage terms, and 2nd worst in terms of the unemployment rate (only early '80s recession with a peak of 10.8 percent was worse).
Hopefully, the economic implications thereof will not fall on deaf ears in America's halls of power.

6 comments:

Jeff said...

Thanks for cheering me up. Have to tell you, I think the numbers are low.

Michael said...

This chart does show a troubling percent of job losses but I think there is a lot of other interesting information. Compare the slopes of the other recessionary periods and we see past recessions caused much quicker cuts than in 2007. Additionally, recovery was also steeply sloped showing a quicker return to normality. In periods where the slope was less severe in the loss periods, the recoveries were also slow. Perhaps this indicates that the markets are getting dare I say more efficient and are less prone to market reactions. Perhaps government intervention has caused some of the differences?

Sheyla said...

The unemployment rate was at its lowest under Clinton's administration. Since we are talking facts, that is the real true.

Dave Iverson said...

Jobs this time -- other than government stimulus jobs -- are going to be hard to come by, I suspect. The problem is that the winds of Schumpeter's Creative Destruction are gale force (or higher). Not only are jobs rapidly going to labor markets with much lower wage rates, but are being displaced by computerized robotics and global information systems that allow people to do the work of many. Interesting Times!

Dr William J McKibbin said...

Hi Dave, well said. You might want to read my post about leveraging polyvalence to defy the ongoing trend toward commoditization. More at: http://wjmc.blogspot.com/2010/03/polyvalence-defies-commoditization.html

Thomas Signroello Senior Manager, SendOutCards said...

Some may look at this and see the "glass less than half empty" Others may look at it and see opportunity. To make a comparison to the recessions dating back to WWII, each and every one had an Economic and Employment recovery phase. In each case, Network Marketing was the industry that led business out of those troubled times. When times get bad. True leaders emerge and find a way to "build a better mousetrap"!

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