Unemployment rate falls to 8.6 percent, the lowest since March 2009

December 2, 2011


Unemployment Dips, But That Hardly Makes Up for a Lost Year on Economic Recovery

By Mike Konczal | The Nation

Today the Bureau of Labor Statistics announced that unemployment dropped to 8.6 percent from 9 percent, while the economy added 120,000 new jobs.  Is this actually good news? About half of this decline is due to workers giving up looking. We can get a better sense from the employment-to-population ratio, because unemployment doesn’t track people who have stopped looking for work.  The employment-to-population ratio did increase slightly to 58.5 percent, but this is still within the range it has been for two years.

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