Confused About Unemployment Numbers?

Update by NewsTalkFlorida Newsroom:

Are you confused by the government’s unemployment reports? Join the line.

The government’s job reports — as explained in glowing terms by the Associated Press below — continue to confound and confuse Americans on many levels.

As the AP reports, the unemployment rate dropped to a seven-year low from 5.1 percent to 5.3, but hiring in August ended as the weakest in five months and the government “revised up” the number by 44,000 jobs. Private Sector jobs — those non-government, large- and small-businesses — rose by only 140,000. Government jobs swelled by 30,0000.

A crucial fact missing from the AP story involves the 94 million people without jobs. Nearly 30 percent of the nation’s 318 million people remain on the sidelines.

To reverse the numbers, just 68% of the country is working and that’s the lowest number of participants since 1977 when the number bottomed out to 62.4 percent.

When Barack Obama assumed office in 2008, 60.9 percent of the female population participated in employment. Currently the number stands at 58.2 percent.

As of January 2015, 46 million Americans received food stamps.

Wall Street reacted to the news by dropping one percent on Friday. As of 1 pm ET, the Dow was down by over 300 points.

Dow Jones

WASHINGTON (AP) — The unemployment rate tumbled to a seven-year low in August as employers added a modest 173,000 jobs, complicating the U.S. Federal Reserve’s decision whether to raise rates in two weeks.

The Labor Department says the unemployment rate fell to 5.1 percent from 5.3 percent, the lowest since April 2008.

Hiring in August was the weakest in five months, but the government revised up the June and July figures by a combined 44,000 jobs. The economy generated 221,000 jobs a month from June through August, up from an average 189,000 in March through May.

Steady hiring could encourage the Fed to raise rates for the first time in a decade. Still, stock market turbulence, a persistently low inflation rate and a sharp slowdown in China could weigh on officials.