The June 2014 unemployment report is out today, and while a lot of people are focusing on the big number – the smaller ones paint a more realistic picture of just how bad the economy still is.
1. For the 49th time in 50 months, more people gave up on the job search than those who found a new job.
Yeah, you read that right. The number of people actively searching for a job is at a three-decade low. People are so tired of looking for jobs that aren’t there, that they’re just giving up.
2. There are over 5 million missing workers. If these workers were calculated into the job report’s math, the unemployment rate would actually be 11.1%.
And by missing workers, we don’t mean lost in the woods. Missing workers are those who, because of so few job opportunities, are neither employed nor actively seeking a job. Again – giving up because of lack of opportunity.
3. There are still two and a half times as many long-term unemployed Americans as before the recession.
The long-term job seekers – who have been looking for work for over 6 months – count for one-third of the unemployed.
4. 30% of job seekers who found jobs had to settle for part-time positions.
Newsflash – that’s not what they wanted. Finding a good-paying, full-time job is still a huge challenge for many Americans.
5. Forty percent of the unemployed are millennials.
Between 1987 and 2000, 30 million net jobs were added. But since 2000, when millennials entered the workforce, only 4 million jobs were added. Now, there are 4.6 million 18-29 year olds out of work.
6. While some industries grew, quite a few suffered heavy losses in June.
The sectors of the manufacturing industry, commercial banking, and construction saw thousands of jobs lost.
7. Don’t forget about that awful GDP number.
In this century, GDP growth has averaged 1.7% per year. During the period from President Reagan to President Clinton, it was 3.8%. A weak economy is making it harder for consumers and job-seekers to improve their lives and find good work.
Today’s jobs report may have shown growth in the employment number – but there is more than one fact to this story. Too many Americans are not seeing change or hope under President Obama’s economy. Too many are still struggling, and too many are giving up. House Republicans view today’s report as yet another reason to continue working to make the American economy stronger and put more people back to work. There are a lot of numbers that need fixing – and we aren’t getting distracted by the pretty one.