Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Using a Secret Decipher Ring on Unemployment Rates

Reports from yesterday will say that the October unemployment rate went up in Licking County to 9% from September's 8.8%.

Reason for doom and gloom? I say no.

As I've written before, I'm watching employment, not unemployment.

Employment went up. According to the Ohio LMI Division folks, there were 400 more people in Licking County employed in October than were employed in September.

This news is the opposite of last month's news when the oddity was that the unemployment rate went down while employment declined.

Here's the 2010 chart straight from my Excel spreadsheet to track employment:

These are the facts derived from a deciphered look at the data:

The data shows that 2,500 more people were employed in October 2010 than were employed in January 2010. That's good.

The data shows, despite an inexplicable adjustment down in labor force size in September, that employment has remained at or above 76,000 for six months in a row. That's good.

The data shows that seven out of the last nine months have seen increases in employment. That's good.

So, yes the unemployment rate went up, but the good news is that employment rose. That odd combination is preferred.
That's why I'm watching employment.

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