“The 3.3 million new unemployment insurance claims that the Labor Department reported Thursday is likely a significant undercount, experts say, because laid-off workers have been calling into state unemployment agencies much faster than the agencies can process their requests,” Politico reports.
“I just think these numbers right now are not relevant. Whether they’re bigger or smaller in the short term… the good thing about this bill is, the president is protecting these people.”
— Asked on CNBC about the record joblessness report, which totaled nearly 3.3 million people, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin downplayed the report.
Washington Post: “In more than 1,000 counties, or about one in three, the unemployment rate is higher than it was a year ago. That includes all 72 counties in Wisconsin and all 10 in New Hampshire, as well as most in Michigan, Minnesota and North Carolina. The numbers can be volatile from month to month, but this trend remains even if you look at entire quarters or years.”
Job growth came to a near halt in February after a blistering start to the year, with nonfarm payrolls increasing by just 20,000 even as the unemployment fell to 3.8 percent, CNBC reports.
The Labor Department said that 304,000 jobs were added last month, as compared to an estimate by economists of about 172,000, the New York Times reports. The unemployment rate rose to 4.0 percent. “January’s growth means that American employers have added jobs for 100 consecutive months, extending a record run. The unemployment rate is near a multidecade low, and wages — long a weak point — are rising.”
“U.S. employers extended a streak of solid hiring in May, adding 223,000 jobs and helping lower the unemployment rate to an 18-year low of 3.8 percent from 3.9 percent in April,” the AP reports.
The black unemployment rate, which President Trump claimed credit for reducing to a record low, jumped last month by the most in almost six years, Bloomberg reports: “The Labor Department’s monthly employment report released Friday showed that joblessness among black Americans rose to a nine-month high of 7.7 percent in January from 6.8 percent in December, which was the lowest in data back to 1972. The 0.9 percentage-point rise was the most since June 2012.”
Vox: “Trump is certainly right that black unemployment hit a historic low in December 2017, not only falling to its lowest level since the Great Recession but falling below 7 percent for the first time since the statistic began being recorded. Given that black unemployment hit a high point of around 16.7 percent in August 2011 as the country recovered from the Great Recession, the new number is ostensibly good news. But exactly how much progress the new 6.8 percent number reflects, and what role Trump played in getting it there, isn’t exactly what the president says.