Here’s one view on US unemployment;

The U.S. unemployment rate hit 10.3 percent in February, up from 9.8 percent at the end of January, according to the Gallup polling agency. The rate of those considered to be underemployed, meanwhile, reached 19.9 percent last month, up from 18.9 percent at the end of January, Gallup says. Results are based on a 30-day rolling average.

Here’s another;

The US unemployment rate fell slightly to 8.9% in February, down from 9% the month before. It is the third month in a row that the jobless rate has fallen, with February’s figure marking a near two-year low.

Can you GUESS which one of these comes from the BBC?

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  1. Andrew says:

    The devil as ever is within the detail with the BBC and they’ve used it to spin a story that is counter to the analysis that they draw in the sidebar.   Plus the BBC do appear to have done some comparatives from outside of the press release they were given to enhance the story.
    The BBC used the Bureau of Labor Statistics which does indeed report a headline rate of 8.9%  The problem comes in this little group who have been subject to the Brownian Unemployment Scale within the report:  

    In February, 2.7 million persons were marginally attached to the labor force, up from 2.5 million a year earlier. (These data are not seasonally adjusted.) These individuals were not in the labor force, wanted and were available for work, and had looked for a job sometime in the prior 12 months. They were not counted as unemployed because they had not searched for work in the 4 weeks preceding thesurvey. (See table A-16.)

    So in a nutshell, there’s a group who aren’t  officially unemployed because they’ve lost interest in looking for work.

     Now my maths is a little shaky and the statement rounds up thenumbers but adding those in takes you to above 10%.

    According to some sources this shifting of people caused someupset in the market in the back end of 2010 when they found the figures didn’t actually indicate any growth.
    And how odd that the main story runs totally counter to two key statements in the analysis:
    The unemployment rate remains stubbornly high, with more than 13 million Americans out of work. As the Chairman of the Federal Reserve, Ben Bernanke testified this week, the current jobs growth is not enough to recover the millions of jobs lost during the recent recession.  
    And today’s figures are only part of the story. They don’t take into account those people who have given up looking for work or those who want full time employment but can only find part time jobs. 

    So the real story is Obama handling of economy brilliant – if you don’t look at the facts 


  2. David Preiser (USA) says:

    Many parts of the US are really in a Depression.  With the inevitable layoffs coming in the state and city public sector, not to mention the looming disaster in the publishing industry, the rest of the country will be feeling it in very short order. There are already a number of signs of people cutting expenses which will lead to other industries shrinking, meaning lots more unemployed people.  The cable and  satellite TV scene is just one example.

    Then the BBC’s task will be to convince you that none of it is His fault.


  3. Keith Anderson says:

    Can we just clarify one point about this comparison. The first example is from a POLL where ‘Results are based on a 30-day rolling average’. The second one are STATISTICS from the US Labor Department. How can you even compare/contrast? You hold the BBC accountable for bias, yet you youself are blinded and biased against the BBC. This is a perfect example of how you manipulate figures to suit your own agenda.