The PJ Tatler

July Unemployment Report: More McJobs

The July unemployment report is out from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The government claims that overall non-farm unemployment edged down to 7.4% but the 162,000 jobs created were mostly not high-quality jobs. In a Republican administration, the media would characterize them as “McJobs.”

Total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 162,000 in July, and the unemployment rate edged down to 7.4 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Employment rose in retail trade, food services and drinking places, financial activities, and wholesale trade.

Unemployment for blacks remains well above the national average, at 12.6%, and a stunning 23.7% for teenagers.

In July, 2.4 million persons were marginally attached to the labor force, little changed from a year earlier. (The data are not seasonally adjusted.) These individuals were not in the labor force, wanted and were available for work, and had looked for a job sometime in the prior 12 months. They were not counted as unemployed because they had not searched for work in the 4 weeks preceding the survey. (See table A-16.)

Among the marginally attached, there were 988,000 discouraged workers in July, up by 136,000 from a year earlier. (The data are not seasonally adjusted.) Discouraged workers are persons not currently looking for work because they believe no jobs are available for them. The remaining 1.4 million persons marginally attached to the labor force in July had not searched for work for reasons such as school attendance or family responsibilities. (See table A-16.)

Expectations: Not met.

The overall labor force participation rate in July 2013 was 63.4%, which is down from 63.7% for the same month in 2012.