The Real Unemployment Rate
I’ve been mentioning the “real” unemployment rate in many of my blog posts and articles on the web. The White House will tell you with a straight face that we’re holding the unemployment rate at an ugly 9.1 percent, but truthfully, the “real” unemployment is far more ghastly. It hovers around 16 to 20 percent.
The job market is even worse than the 9.1 percent unemployment rate suggests.America’s 14 million unemployed aren’t competing just with each other. They must also contend with 8.8 million other people not counted as unemployed – part-timers who want full-time work.When consumer demand picks up, companies will likely boost the hours of their part-timers before they add jobs, economists say. It means they have room to expand without hiring.And the unemployed will face another source of competition once the economy improves: Roughly 2.6 million people who aren’t counted as unemployed because they’ve stopped looking for work. Once they start looking again, they’ll be classified as unemployed. And the unemployment rate could rise.