Unemployment Numbers: Bad, GoodS

The government just released the latest US unemployment figures: 345,000 jobs lost in May, bringing the national unemployment rate to 9.4%. Is that good, or bad? Yes.

It's Not So Bad!

NYT: "The rate of job losses in the United States slowed significantly in May, the government reported Friday, lifting hopes that the country's plummeting labor market was on its way to stabilizing."

WSJ: "U.S. job losses softened markedly last month, sending one of the strongest signals yet that the severe recession may be winding down."

LAT: "The number of lost jobs was the lowest since September, and it was only half of the average monthly job losses in the last six months."

WaPo: "Economists had expected a much worse loss, of as many as 525,000 jobs. The Labor Department also said that April job losses were somewhat less severe than originally reported."

It's Bad!

NYT: "These are still terrible numbers," said Ian Shepherdson, chief United States economist at High Frequency Economics. "We're a million miles away from a recovery."

WSJ: "When marginally attached and involuntary part-time workers are included, the rate of unemployed or underemployed workers hit 16.4% last month, up from 15.8% in April and almost seven percentage points higher than it was one year ago."

LAT: "The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the nationwide unemployment rate now stands at 9.4%, the worst it has been in more than 25 years."

WaPo: "That said, the labor market is far from rosy. Since the beginning of the recession in December 2007, 7 million people have become unemployed, including an additional 787,000 in May alone."

The Funemployment numbers, however, remain smooth as a baby's bottom.
[Pic via]