Saturday, February 04, 2012

How many private sector jobs were created?

Everyone is excited about the new employment numbers and the increase of 243,000 non-farm payroll jobs in January.  Does that mean that there are 243,000 more jobs now?  Not actually.  Joyn Crudele at the NY Post explains:
Those 243,000 jobs are the total after seasonal adjustments.

The question you should be asking is, what’s the un-tampered-with number before the adjustment?

Glad you asked. The Labor Department reported a loss of 2,689,000 jobs in January.

Did you catch that? Because the Labor Dept. expected a loss of nearly 3 million jobs but only 2.7 million jobs were lost, it reports a job gain. Now, "seasonal adjustments" are, in principle, a good thing.  When you allow for how the running "seasonal adjustments" have never been very accurate, the adjusted number has little meaning.

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