Daily Chart: June Employment and Unemployment

By Conor Clarke

There are two charts this morning -- both on the updated employment situation and both from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. First, the unemployment rate increased to 9.5%:

unemployment rate.png
The second (and more worrying) chart is the month-over-month change in employment, which declined by 467,000. Stating the obvious: That's bad, and substantially worse than May.

month over month employment.pngDavid Leonhardt has more details. For the full BLS release see here (PDF).

UPDATE: Over at Atlantic Business, Daniel Indiviglio writes that the unemployment rate disguises some of the true cost here. That's exactly right. To be counted as unemployed you must be part of the labor force, and to be part of the labor force you must be looking for a job. (Welcome to the definitional funhouse: Workers that are not employed but not looking for employment are not counted as unemployed.)

I would further note that this is why the second of the two charts above is the more worrying. Part of the reason the unemployment rate increased at a faster pace in May than in June (even though May's decline in employment was not as drastic) is because a lot of workers dropped out of the labor force in June. Again, stating the obvious, this is bad.


This article available online at:

http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2009/07/daily-chart-june-employment-and-unemployment/20516/