The latest data released on Wednesday, November 9, 2010 by the Department of Labor states that new unemployment claims for the prior week dropped slightly when looking at seasonally adjusted numbers. Are we as a nation just becoming numb to these weekly numbers? The report states:
In the week ending Nov. 6, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 435,000, a decrease of 24,000 from the previous week’s revised figure of 459,000. The 4-week moving average was 446,500, a decrease of 10,000 from the previous week’s revised average of 456,500
With a normal pace of 300,000-325,000 new unemployment claims a week in a sound economy, the state of affairs today is still bleak and hemorrhaging jobs at a very high rate despite the look of improvement.
When viewing the full report, the unadjusted number of job losses paints a darker picture from the prior week and from the seasonally adjusted numbers reported above:
The advance number of actual initial claims under state programs, unadjusted, totaled 449,905 in the week ending Nov. 6, an increase of 28,808 from the previous week. There were 531,743 initial claims in the comparable week in 2009.
One method shows things getting better. The other shows them getting worse. Reality says bad is bad, and these are not numbers, they’re PEOPLE!
One cannot expect improvement in the jobs market while it is still running at a rate of 1.8 million job losses per month. The long term unemployed, especially the 99ers currently trying to survive with no benefits whatsoever, face a real challenge in finding work in a continually deteriorating job market. The data still clearly indicates that passing unemployment extensions due to expire Nov. 30 are definitely warranted. The creation of additional weeks or a Tier V for the 99ers is also definitely warranted.
Now that the midterm elections are behind us, job creation bills, unemployment extensions, and the creation of a Tier V should be the number one priority of Congress going into a lame duck session. Millions upon millions of suffering Americans deserve relief and action by Congress and by President Obama. They have waited too long as it is.