The latest data released by the Department of Labor today indicates that in the last week the number of new claims as compared to the prior week dropped. One would take this as a bit of good news, but one must temper their elation on seeing better numbers with a good dose of reality. In the world of bad, terrible, and horrible we have simply moved in recent months from horrible to terrible. The Bureau of Labor Statistics provided the following data this morning:
In the week ending Oct. 16, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 452,000, a decrease of 23,000 from the previous week’s revised figure of 475,000. The 4-week moving average was 458,000, a decrease of 4,250 from the previous week’s revised average of 462,250.
While it is nice to see a decrease in the number of new claims from the prior week, one simply needs to perform a little arithmetic to see that the problem is still catastrophic. With 452,000 new claims in the prior week, if this “decreased” value was used for calculating a monthly figure based on 4 weeks per month, one quickly sees that the economy is still losing a huge portion of its workforce. At 4 weeks per month x 452,000 jobs lost per week, the number is still a staggering 1,808,000 PEOPLE losing there jobs every month. Yes, some of these people will wind up as short term transitions into new positions, but many will face weeks, months, or maybe years as the new unemployed in America. At 1.8 million people a month, that’s a lot of people!
Business and the government need to step up and change this negative flow related to continued job losses. Corporations that are sitting on record high cash reserves need to come to grips with their responsibilities as good corporate citizens and stop their continued slashing of the workforce in an attempt to continue to post excessive profits. Sustainable profits would be just fine thank you very much!
The people must wake up and contact their representatives and senators to let them know that job creation and unemployment extensions including the adoption of a Tier V are mandatory actions. With the midterm elections looming, every citizen should be asking every candidate where they stand on job creation, unemployment extensions, and a Tier V and make sure their candidate has a legitimate response to these issues and not just some pie in the sky cookie cutter response. Our future depends on having qualified and passionate leadership by our elected officials in the coming months. Let’s make sure that those we are electing are up to the job!