Statistics of the Day: Labor-Related


One of the refrains over the past four to five years has been how many Americans are unemployed but uncounted in the “official” unemployment figures.

The following chart does not suggest that chronic unemployment does not exist among certain demographic groups or in certain locations, nor does it suggest that a sizable number of those employed are not under-employed–in terms of having under-utilized skills, working part-time because full-time positions are not available, or getting paid less currently than previously.

But the chart does show that the very real problems with unemployment and under-employment have been used to create a much more negative impression of overall employment than is actually supported by the numbers.


If the current trajectory continues under President Trump, he will have something real to brag about. If not, he is going to have to say something more than the numbers have been “rigged” to make him look bad. The “true believers” may accept that rationalization of his failure to keep one of the core promises of his campaign, but those voters did not give him his extremely narrow margins of victory in Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin.


3 thoughts on “Statistics of the Day: Labor-Related

  1. The chart is seriously misleading unless you also provide a chart showing the increase in the population of the U.S. during those years. A quick google search suggests the total population increased from 310 million to 326.5 million during the years 2010-2017. So the increase in employment during those years has only barely exceeded the increase in working-age population.

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