October 5, 2012
Today, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released another disappointing unemployment report for the month of September. While the unemployment rate ticked down, the number of new payroll jobs added to the economy was far too weak to spur economic growth or the even keep pace with the working population. After promising Americans that the unemployment rate would never exceed eight percent in a given month when his “stimulus” was introduced, the president’s record now sadly stands at 1 for 44. For baseball fans, that means the president is batting .022 when it comes to his unemployment rate prediction. Unfortunately, the fact remains that our economy is essentially stalled because of President Obama’s failed economic policies.
KEY FACTS ABOUT THE SEPTEMBER UNEMPLOYMENT REPORT
- President Obama’s policies have failed and mired the nation in the weakest recovery since the Great Depression even if the unemployment rate continues to inch downward.
- The unemployment rate has fallen recently because the percentage of able Americans seeking employment has plunged and is near a 32-year low as fewer people search for jobs.
- If the percentage of Americans searching for work today were the same as when the president took office, the unemployment rate would be 10.9 percent.
- While there were 114,000 payroll jobs added in September, it was still 36,000 short of the number that BLS says is needed each month just to keep pace with population growth.
- In September, there were 23.2 million underemployed Americans who cannot find any or enough work—an increase from August.
- Since President Obama was elected, median family income has fallen by $2,492. Family income has fallen every year under President Obama, according to the Census Bureau.
- Last week, economic growth was revised down to an anemic 1.3 percent in the second quarter of 2012, the second straight quarter with negative growth.
- The Obama Administration claimed that unemployment would be 5.5 percent today if the failed “stimulus” was enacted.
THE BROADER ECONOMY UNDER PRESIDENT OBAMA
Any way you look at it, we are suffering though the weakest recovery since the Great Depression. The following figures demonstrate—regardless of what the unemployment rate is—that the President’s agenda is detrimental for the economy as a whole and especially for the nation’s most vulnerable citizens.
- Record Number of Americans Unable to Put Food on the Table: The number of Americans receiving food stamps as of June 2012 was 46.7 million—the highest amount in history. Today, nearly 15 percent of Americans receive food stamps, an increase of more than 45 percent since President Obama took office.
- 1 in 2 People are Now Poor or Low-Income: According to a Census Bureau report, nearly half of all Americans are now classified as poor or low-income as a result of the Obama Economy. The 97.3 million Americans who fall into the low-income category combined with the 49.1 million who fall below the poverty line now equal 146.4 million people or 48 percent of the U.S. population.
- GDP Growth Revised Down, Trending Down: Today, the Bureau of Economic Data (BEA) released its updated estimates for gross domestic product (GDP) which showed that the economy grew by an anemic 1.3 percent in the second quarter of 2012, down from 2 percent in the year’s first quarter. Economic growth estimates were significantly lower than previously estimated for the second quarter (1.7 percent) and 1.3 percent growth matches the slowest economic quarter since 2009.
- Half of Recent College Graduates Are Jobless: More than 50 percent of recent college graduates are unemployed. About 1.5 million, or 53.6 percent, of bachelor's degree-holders under the age of 25 last year were jobless or underemployed.
- Ease of Starting a Business in the U.S. Fell from 4th to 13th: According to the World Bank’s Doing Business 2012 report, the U.S. now ranks 13th in the world in the ease of starting a new business and has been steadily declining since President Obama took office. In 2011, the U.S. was 8th. In 2009, the U.S. was ranked 6th. It was 4th in 2008 and 3rd in 2007.
- Percentage of Working Americans at a 30-Year Low: The labor force participation rate, which measures the percentage of able Americans working or looking for work, was near a 32-year low of 63.6 percent in September. Much of the recent decline in the unemployment rate can be attributed to the historic drop in labor force participation as more and more American give up on finding a job.
- Gas Prices Rise, Take Even Bigger Chunk Out of the Family Budget: When President Obama took office, a gallon of gas cost $1.89. Today, a gallon of gas costs $3.79. Since President Obama took office, gas prices have more than doubled while household income has fallen.
September Unemployment by the Numbers
- 7.8%: The unemployment rate for the month of September fell to was 7.8 percent. Since the president’s failed $1.2 trillion “stimulus” was enacted in February 2009 unemployment has averaged 9 percent.
- 5.5%: The Obama administration claimed unemployment would be less than 5.5 percent today if the “stimulus” was signed into law.
- 63.6%: The labor force participation rate, which measures the percentage of able Americans working or looking for work, remained essentially stagnant, inching from 63.4 percent to 63.5 percent in September, near the lowest level since September 1981. Much of the recent decline in the unemployment rate (from September 2011 – September 2012) can be attributed to the historic drop in labor force participation as more and more American give up on finding a job. That means that 36.4 percent of able-bodied, non-elderly Americans are not even looking for a job in the Obama economy.
- 10.9%: If the labor force participation rate were at the same level it was when President Obama took office the unemployment rate would be 10.9 percent today.
- 14.7%: The rate of “underemployment” or “real unemployment,” including the unemployed, those who want work but have stopped searching in this economy, and those who are forced to work part-time because they cannot find full-time employment is 14.7 percent.
- 12,088,000: There were 12. million unemployed Americans looking for work in the month of September. There have been at least 12 million unemployed Americans every month that President Obama has been in office.
- 8,613,000: The number of Americans forced to work only part-time in September because they could not find full-time employment was 8.6 million, up by nearly 600,000 from August.
- 2,517,000: The number of people who have looked for a job at some point in the last year but are not counted as unemployed because they gave up their search is now 2.5 million
- 802,000: The number of discouraged people who stopped looking for work because they believed there were no jobs available is now 802,000.
- 23,218,000: The total number of “underemployed” Americans is 23.2 million, including those unemployed (12 million), those who are no longer looking for work (2.5 million), and those who are working part-time because no other work is available (8.6 million).
- 39.8: The average number of weeks it takes for job seekers to find a job rose to 39.8 weeks in September. The average time it takes for people to find a job is almost twice as long as than the 19.8 weeks average in January 2009 when President Obama took office.
- 4,844,000: The long-term unemployed, measured by the number of Americans unemployed and searching for work for more than 27 weeks, was 4.8 million in the month of September. Since President Obama took office in January 2009, the number of people unemployed for more than 27 weeks has increased by 80 percent.
- 46,200,000: The number of Americans who were in poverty in 2010, up from 43.6 million in 2009—the fourth consecutive annual increase in the number of people in poverty. The number of Americans in poverty in 2010 is the largest number in the 52 years in which poverty estimates have been published by the Census Bureau.
- 46,670,373: The number of Americans receiving food stamps as of June 2012 was 46.6 million, a record high. Today, 15 percent of Americans receive food stamps, an increase of 45 percent since President Obama took office.
- 1,247,000: The number of first time job seekers that are unemployed is now 1.2 million. The number of new workers who cannot find a job has been above 1 million for 39 months.
- 23.7%: The unemployment rate among job seekers between the ages of 16 and 19 was almost 24 percent in September. Youth unemployment has been above 23 percent for 41 months, the longest streak since the Great Depression.
- 13.4%: The unemployment rate among African Americans in September was 13.4 percent.
- 9.9%: The unemployment rate among Hispanics and Latinos in September was 9.9 percent.
- $1,178,000,000,000: The total cost of the Democrats’ “stimulus.” CBO estimates the cost of the bill will reach $831 billion and interest on the debt for the bill will be at least $347 billion.
For additional information, contact:
The House Republican Conference Policy Office