Unemployment rates fell in 29 states last month

At least, according to this story on Yahoo!Finance:

Unemployment rates fell in most states in February and two-thirds of the states reported job gains, evidence that most of the country is benefiting from slow but steady improvement in the job market.

Unemployment rates dropped in 29 states, rose in 10 and were unchanged in the remaining 11, the Labor Department said Friday. Meanwhile, hiring rose in 33 states and fell in 17.

The big winner was South Carolina, the state where BMW plans a $1 billion expansion of its auto manufacturing plant.

The biggest drop in unemployment occurred in South Carolina, where the rate fell to 5.7 percent from 6.4 percent. Ohio reported the next biggest decline, to 6.5 percent from 6.9 percent.

But waitaminute!!!

South Carolina actually lost jobs last month, so the big drop in its unemployment rate partly occurred because many of the unemployed stopped looking for work. The number of unemployed people in the state fell sharply. The government doesn’t count those out of work as unemployed unless they are actively searching.

***

Another factor: The unemployment rate and job counts come from different surveys that can produce disparate results. The number of jobs in each state is calculated from a survey of employers, while the unemployment rate stems from a separate survey of households. The number of people in South Carolina who said they had jobs rose, even though the survey of employers found fewer overall positions.

So the unemployment rate fell in 29 states.  Except that it didn’t.  Or something like that.   I need a drink…

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Categories: All is well!!!, Bad News Everyone!, Economic Schizophrenia, Good News Everyone!, Unemployment

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