Proudly afflicting the comfortable [and collecting shiny things] since March 2003

Send Magpie an email!


RSS Feeds
Click button to subscribe.

Subscribe to Magpie via Feedburner  Magpie's RSS feed via Bloglines
Add to Netvibes

Need a password?
Click the button!


Bypass 'free' registration!


Cost of the Iraq War [US$]
(JavaScript Error)
[Find out more here]

Hooded Liberty


BLOGS WE LIKE
3quarksdaily
Alas, a Blog
alphabitch
Back to Iraq
Baghdad Burning
Bitch Ph.D.
blac (k) ademic
Blog Report
Blogs by Women
BOPNews
Broadsheet
Burnt Orange Report
Confined Space
Cursor
Daily Kos
Dangereuse trilingue
Echidne of the Snakes
Effect Measure
Eschaton (Atrios)
feministe
Feministing
Firedoglake
Follow Me Here
gendergeek
Gordon.Coale
The Housing Bubble New!
I Blame the Patriarchy
Juan Cole/Informed Comment
Kicking Ass
The King's Blog
The Krile Files
Left Coaster
librarian.net
Loaded Orygun
Making Light
Marian's Blog
mediagirl
Muslim Wake Up! Blog
My Left Wing
NathanNewman.org
The NewsHoggers
Null Device
Orcinus
Pacific Views
Pandagon
The Panda's Thumb
Pedantry
Peking Duck
Philobiblon
Pinko Feminist Hellcat
Political Animal
Reality-Based Community
Riba Rambles
The Rittenhouse Review
Road to Surfdom
Romenesko
SCOTUSblog
The Sideshow
The Silence of Our Friends New!
Sisyphus Shrugged
skippy
Suburban Guerrilla
Talk Left
Talking Points Memo
TAPPED
This Modern World
The Unapologetic Mexican New!
veiled4allah
Wampum
War and Piece
wood s lot
xymphora

MISSING IN ACTION
Body and Soul
fafblog
General Glut's Globlog
Respectful of Otters
RuminateThis


Image by Propaganda Remix Project. Click to see more.


WHO'S IN CHARGE HERE?
Magpie is a former journalist, attempted historian [No, you can't ask how her thesis is going], and full-time corvid of the lesbian persuasion. She keeps herself in birdseed by writing those bad computer manuals that you toss out without bothering to read them. She also blogs too much when she's not on deadline, both here and at Pacific Views.

Magpie roosts in Portland, Oregon, where she annoys her housemates (as well as her cats Medea, Whiskers, and Jane Doe) by attempting to play Irish music on the fiddle and concertina.

If you like, you can send Magpie an email!



WHO LINKS TO MAGPIE?
Ask Technorati.
Or ask WhoLinksToMe.


Politics Blog Top Sites

Progressive Women's Blog Ring

Join | List |
Previous | Next | Random |
Previous 5 | Next 5 |
Skip Previous | Skip Next

Powered by RingSurf



Creative Commons License


This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.

Check to open links in new windows. Uncheck to see comments.


Tuesday, November 11, 2003

Reading the economic tea leaves.

The Economic Policy Institute knows how to read the US economy's tea leaves better than just about anyone. This progressive economic think-tank has just put out a new paper about the current 'jobless recovery' in the US, and the paper is a welcome counterbalance to all of the economic boosterism coming out of Washington (and echoed in the press).

According to EPI, the current slump in the labor market has been underestimated because analysts tend to focus on the official unemployment rate and gains in real hourly wages. EPI warns that the slump is 'setting records for severity in terms of sustained loss of jobs, the increase in labor market slack, and the decline in aggregate wage and salary income.' In other words, people keep losing jobs, unemployed workers are getting discouraged and dropping out of the labor force, and the number of actual jobs (as well as the number of hours worked per job) is continuing to drop.

The paper does an excellent job of making difficult economic data understandable even to Magpie, whose brain tends to hurt when confronted with too many statistics. While we learned many things about the current economic mess, this here especially caught our attention:

The effect of the "missing" labor market on the unemployment rate — The unusually prolonged loss of jobs has caused an unprecedented number of people to refrain from actively looking for work, and therefore to be excluded from the unemployment measurement. Had the labor force grown more in line with the population—as it has in past labor slumps—another 2.3 million people would have been in the labor force in October 2003. This "missing" labor force is significant because the unemployment rate would have been 7.4% had the 2.3 million "missing" workers been considered as unemployed. The 7.4% unemployment figure provides a better measure of current slack in the labor market than the actual unemployment rate of 6.0%. The 1.4 percentage-point difference reflects the people pushed to the sidelines of the labor market who can be expected to seek work again once job prospects improve. As a result, the official unemployment rate should not be expected to fall very much when the employment picture actually begins to improve.

When Magpie worked as a reporter, one of the rules of thumb we used when writing about unemployment was that the actual unemployment rate was at least 25 percent higher than the official rate from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. We can't say that we're particularly happy to see that this rule of thumb still applies.

| | Posted by Magpie at 6:29 PM | Get permalink




Liar, liar, pants on fire!


NEWS HEADLINES

Mail & Guardian [S. Africa]
NEWS LINKS
BBC News
CBC News
Agence France Presse
Reuters
Associated Press
Aljazeera
Inter Press Service
Watching America
International Herald Tribune
Guardian (UK)
Independent (UK)
USA Today
NY Times (US)
Washington Post (US)
McClatchy Washington Bureau (US)
Boston Globe (US)
LA Times (US)
Globe & Mail (Canada)
Toronto Star (Canada)
Sydney Morning Herald (Australia)
AllAfrica.com
Mail & Guardian (South Africa)
Al-Ahram (Egypt)
Daily Star (Lebanon)
Haaretz (Israel)
Hindustan Times (India)
Japan Times (Japan)
Asia Times (Hong Kong)
EurasiaNet
New Scientist News
Paper Chase
OpenCongress

COMMENT & ANALYSIS
Molly Ivins
CJR Daily
Women's eNews
Raw Story
The Gadflyer
Working for Change
Common Dreams
AlterNet
Truthdig
Truthout
Salon
Democracy Now!
American Microphone
rabble
The Revealer
Current
Editor & Publisher
Economic Policy Institute
Center for American Progress
The Memory Hole


Irish-American fiddler Liz Carroll

IRISH MUSIC
Céilí House (RTE Radio)
TheSession.org
The Irish Fiddle
Fiddler Magazine
Concertina.net
Concertina Library
A Guide to the Irish Flute
Chiff & Fipple
Irtrad-l Archives
Ceolas
Comhaltas Ceoltoiri Eireann
BBC Virtual Session
JC's ABC Tune Finder

SHINY THINGS
alt.portland
Propaganda Remix Project
Ask a Ninja
grow-a-brain
Boiling Point
Bruno
Cat and Girl
Dykes to Watch Out For
Library of Congress
American Heritage Dictionary
Dictonary of Newfoundland English
American's Guide to Canada
Digital History of the San Fernando Valley
MetaFilter
Blithe House Quarterly
Astronomy Pic of the Day
Earth Science Picture of the Day
Asia Grace
Gaelic Curse Engine
Old Dinosaur Books



ARCHIVES