Jobs Numbers Don't Count Discouraged Seekers

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Unemployment numbers last week showed the U.S. jobless rate at 9.7 percent: the highest since 1983. This number may be misleadingly low, however; the official unemployment rate counts only those who are actively looking for work, not those who have given up on the job search. When positive economic signs tempt those folks back into the job market, the official unemployment rate could actually go up. Louise Story is a Wall Street and finance reporter for our partners The New York Times -- she joins us to tell us more.


Louise Story

Hosted by:

Lynn Sherr and Todd Zwillich

Comments [2]


How do you count 'discouraged' seekers? What form identifies someone as discouraged? Or is a discouraged job seeker someone whose unemployment ran out?

Jan. 09 2010 09:08 PM

How can people afford to stop looking for a job?? Yes, it's extremely disheartening. Yes, you get extremely depressed, to the point that you're practically suicidal. I know. I've been there. But there was no way I stopped looking. I couldn't. I had to have a job, period. The bills needed to be paid. Job searching may have been proving futile, but NOT job searching would have been even more so. They say you can't win the lottery if you don't buy a ticket. You can't get a job if you don't apply for any. I NEVER had the luxury of being able to say "you know what? I give up. I don't feel like doing this anymore. I'll try again when the odds are better." I knew that you can never know when you'll get a job, so to stop looking was never an option.

Sep. 08 2009 10:07 AM

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