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Dec 2014 Jobs Report – Not So Great as Everybody Thinks December 5, 2014

Posted by geoff in News.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics released the jobs report today, reporting an increase in 321K jobs. Hot Air was impressed:

The ADP jobs report for November may have been a slight miss, but the official BLS report hit a bullseye — finally. The US economy added 321,000 jobs last month, the highest figure in years, as job creation belatedly linked up with two solid quarters of growth.

But me, not so much. Because if you look at my interpretation, this month actually had the first downturn in several months:FullTimeEmpvsCivPopDec2014I think my interpretation is more in line with the latest ADP jobs report, which was a little disappointing.

In any case, the employment situation in a time-averaged sense is improving at an appallingly-slow rate.


1. geoff - December 6, 2014


The raw, unadjusted data from Labor showed that 523,000 new jobs were created in November 2013. After that figure was seasonally adjusted, the growth was reduced to 203,000.

The raw, unadjusted numbers reported Friday showed 497,000 new jobs — or 26,000 less than last year’s 523,000 raw number. Yet, this November’s adjustment resulted in a headline figure of 321,000 — or a whopping 118,000 more than last year.

If the seasonal adjustments stayed consistent Friday’s growth should have been less than last year’s 203,000!

I called Labor and checked my figures. An economist there said they were still working on an explanation and that I wasn’t the only one who asked. She said the problem might be because there wasn’t a consistent number of weeks for the survey between this year and 2013.

“This was a big question last month too,” she said, before referring me to Labor’s PR people.

2. Sobek - December 6, 2014


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