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December unemployment rate declines (6.7%); payroll employment edges up (+74,000)


The unemployment rate declined from 7.0 percent to 6.7 percent in
December, while total nonfarm payroll employment edged up (+74,000),
the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Employment rose
in retail trade and wholesale trade but was down in information.

| Revision of Seasonally Adjusted Household Survey Data |
| |
| Seasonally adjusted household survey data have been revised using updated |
| seasonal adjustment factors, a procedure done at the end of each calendar |
| year. Seasonally adjusted estimates back to January 2009 were subject to |
| revision. The unemployment rates for January 2013 through November 2013 |
| (as originally published and as revised) appear in table A, along with |
| with additional information about the revisions. |

Household Survey Data

The number of unemployed persons declined by 490,000 to 10.4 million
in December, and the unemployment rate declined by 0.3 percentage point
to 6.7 percent. Over the year, the number of unemployed persons and the
unemployment rate were down by 1.9 million and 1.2 percentage points,
respectively. (See table A-1.)

Among the major worker groups, the unemployment rates for adult men (6.3
percent) and whites (5.9 percent) declined in December. The rates for adult
women (6.0 percent), teenagers (20.2 percent), blacks (11.9 percent), and
Hispanics (8.3 percent) showed little change. The jobless rate for Asians
was 4.1 percent (not seasonally adjusted), down by 2.5 percentage points
over the year. (See tables A-1, A-2, and A-3.)

Among the unemployed, the number of job losers and persons who completed
temporary jobs decreased by 365,000 in December to 5.4 million. The number
of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks or more), at 3.9
million, showed little change; these individuals accounted for 37.7 percent
of the unemployed. The number of long-term unemployed has declined by 894,000
over the year. (See tables A-11 and A-12.)

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

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Good morning, Freepers and DUers alike. I especially welcome viewers from across the aisle. You’re paying for this information too, so you ought to see this as much as anyone. Please, everyone, put aside your differences long enough to digest the information. After that, you can engage in your usual donnybrook.

If you don’t have the time to study the report thoroughly, here is the news in a nutshell:

Commissioner’s Statement on The Employment Situation

One more thing:

So how many jobs must be created every month to have an effect on the unemployment rate? There’s an app for that.

Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta Jobs Calculator™

Well, enough of that. On with the show.

Monthly Employment Reports

The large print giveth, and the fine print taketh away.

A DU’er pointed out several months ago that, if I’m going to post the link to the press release, I should include the link to all the tables that provide additional ways of examining the data. Specifically, I should post a link to "Table A-15. Alternative measures of labor underutilization." Table A-15 includes those who are not considered unemployed, on the grounds that they have become discouraged about the prospects of finding a job and have given up looking. Here are those links.

Employment Situation

Table A-15. Alternative measures of labor underutilization

From the February 10, 2011, "DOL Newsletter":

Take Three

Secretary Solis answers three questions about how the Bureau of Labor Statistics calculates unemployment rates.

How does BLS determine the unemployment rate and the number of jobs that were added each month?

BLS uses two different surveys to get these numbers. The "household survey," or Current Population Survey (CPS), involves asking people, from about 60,000 households, a series of questions to assess each person in the household’s activities including work and searching for work. Their responses give us the unemployment rate. The "establishment survey," or Current Employment Statistics (CES), surveys 140,000 employers about how many people they have on their payrolls. These results determine the number of jobs being added or lost.

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