Tag Archives: bureau of labor statistics

More Americans on disability than the population of Greece.

CNS News:

The total number of people in the United States now receiving federal disability benefits hit a record 10,962,532 million in April, which exceeds the 10,815,197 people who live in the nation of Greece.

According to newly released data from the Social Security Administration, the record 10,962,532 total disability beneficiaries in April, included a record 8,865,586 disabled workers (up from 8,853,614 in March), 1,936,236 children of disabled workers, and 160,710 spouses of disabled workers.

According to its latest census, Greece had only 10,815,197 residents.

April was the 195th straight month that the number of American workers collecting federal disability payments increased. The last time the number of Americans collecting disability decreased was in January 1997. That month the number of workers taking disability dropped by 249 people—from 4,385,623 in December 1996 to 4,385,374 in January 1997.

As the overall number of American workers collecting disability has increased, the ratio of full-time workers to disability-collecting workers has decreased.

In December 1968, 1,295,428 American workers collected disability and, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 65,630,000 worked full-time. Thus, there were about 51 full-time workers for each worker collecting disability. In April 2013, with a record 8,865,586 American workers collecting disability and 116,053,000 working full-time, there were only 13 Americans working full-time for each worker on disability.

Huffington Post Blasts Obama for Misleading Statements

You read that headline correctly.

Here are a few excerpts…

Huffington Post:

#6. “When Mitt Romney was governor, Massachusetts was No. 1 in state debt. $18 billion in debt. More debt per person than any other state in the country.” — from an attack ad titled “Number One” that was posted June 12, 2012 on the Obama campaign’s official YouTube page

While this statement is factually accurate, it leaves out a big part of the picture.

Massachusetts owed a notoriously large state debt for a long time, certainly before Romney ever set foot in the governor’s office. Part of the reason the Bay State’s debt is so high, as PolitiFact points out, is because many projects that in other states would be funded by counties are funded by the state in Massachusetts.

Secondly, as anyone who’s ever lived in Massachusetts will tell you, “the Big Dig” — a highway and tunnel construction project that was started in the 1980s and has cost over $20 billion — has been a budgetary nightmare for decades. The Boston Globe estimates the project won’t be paid off until 2038 at the earliest. No matter who’s governor of Massachusetts, the Big Dig is still an incredibly expensive project, with the interest alone costing the state billions….

#3. “[Under Romney] Massachusetts plunged to 47th in job creation.” — David Axelrod, Obama campaign senior advisor, on CBS’s ‘Face The Nation,’ June 3, 2012

Romney’s been pummeled with this statistic, first during the Republican primaries and now by the Obama campaign (see here, here and here). Factually, it’s accurate to say that Massachusetts was 47th out of 50 states for job growth from December 2002 through December 2006 — PolitiFact verified the statement using Bureau of Labor Statistics. But there are different ways of looking at the numbers, and, as noted above, Romney inherited a state that was already in deep economic trouble.

While the rate of job growth in Massachusetts was lower than the rate for the country as a whole during that time, the number of jobs in the state did increase under Romney’s tenure.

The poor state of the Massachusetts economy at the time was a major concern in the gubernatorial debates between Romney and his opponent, Shannon O’Brien. The Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that Massachusetts had the second-worst increase in unemployment the year before Romney took office. In fact, it placed at No. 50, so saying it “plunged” to No. 47 in job creation is a little misleading. The data also show that unemployment in Massachusetts bottomed-out a few months after Romney was sworn in, and employment began a slow climb upwards from that point until the Great Recession of 2008-2009.

#2. “Our businesses have created almost 4.3 million new jobs over the last 27 months.” — Obama during a presidential address in Golden Valley, Minn. (June 2, 2012)

Obama has made this claim many times recently (see here, here and here, and see Sarah Jessica Parker say it here), but again, he isn’t giving the whole picture. We called Josh Bivens, an analyst at the Economic Policy Institute, to see what the missing context was. Bivens told us that Obama neglected to mention the 500,000 jobs that were lost in the public sector over the same time period.

Obama also started counting from a low point when the private sector job numbers bottomed out — a more useful statistic would be the number of jobs created in the past two years, or perhaps since he took office. And don’t forget, as The New York Times points out, the country still needs to add more jobs to reach the level of employment when Obama was elected.

766,000 More Women Unemployed Today Than When Obama Took Office

Be sure to see our previous post about labor participation rates.

CNS News

(CNSNews.com) – The number of American women who are unemployed was 766,000 individuals greater in May 2012 than in January 2009, when President Barack Obama took office, according to data released today by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

In January 2009, there were approximately 5,005,000 unemployed women in the United States, according to BLS. In May 2012, there were 5,771,000.

The BLS derives its employment statistics from an overall number it calls the civilian non-institutional population. This includes all Americans 16 or over who are not on active duty in the military and who are not in an institution such as a prison, mental hospital or nursing home. From this civilian non-institutional population, BLS determines a subset it calls the civilian labor force, which includes all members of the civilian non-institutional population who are either employed or have made specific efforts to find work in the past four weeks. People who are not employed and who have not sought work in the past four weeks are considered by the BLS to have dropped out of the labor force.

Unemployed people are those who are in the labor force but do not have a job—despite having looked for one in the past four weeks. The unemployment rate is the percentage of the overall civilian labor force that does not have a job—that is, who have sought a job in the past four weeks and not found one.

In January 2009, according to BLS, the unemployment rate for American women was 7.0 percent. In May 2012, it was 7.9 percent.

When Obama took office in January 2009, the female civilian non-institutional population was 121,166,000. In May 2012, it hit 125,788,000—an increase of 4,622,000 since January 2012.

However, at the same time the female civilian non-institutional population was increasing, the percentage participating in the labor force was declining—following a long-term trend. In January 2009, 59.4 percent of women participated in the labor force, while in May 2012 it was 57.8.

May’s 57.8 percent female participation rate in the labor force was up from April’s rate of 57.6 percent—but that level (57.6 percent) was the lowest it had been since March 1993.Female participation in the labor force peaked at 60.3 percent in April 2000. The last time it was above 60 percent was March 2001, when it hit 60.2 percent.

Despite the increase in the female non-institutional population over the past three years, the actual number of women employed in the United States in May 2012 was about 83,000 lower than it was in January 2009. In January 2009, there were 66,969,000 women employed in the United States and in May 2012 there were 66,886,000.

The number of women employed in the United States peaked at 68,102,000 in April 2008, according to BLS.  The number of women employed in the United States today is 1,216,000 less than that.

Under Obama, Price of Gas Has Jumped 83 Percent, Ground Beef 24 Percent, Bacon 22 Percent

Via CNS News:

(CNSNews.com) – So far, during the presidency of Barack Obama, the price of a gallon of gasoline has jumped 83 percent, according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

During the same period, the price of ground beef has gone up 24 percent and price of bacon has gone up 22 percent.

When Obama entered the White House in January 2009, the city average price for one gallon of regular unleaded gasoline was $1.79, according to the BLS. (The figures are in nominal dollars: not adjusted for inflation.) Five months later in June, unleaded gasoline was $2.26 per gallon, an increase of 26 percent. By December 2011, the price of regular unleaded gas per gallon was $3.28, an 83 percent increase from January 2009.

The price of unleaded gasoline never reached the 10-year high of $4.09 back in July 2008 under George W. Bush’s administration, but it did get close.

By May 2011, gas prices hit a high under the Obama administration at $3.93, about four percentage points away from the July 2008 high.

The U.S. city average retail price for one pound of 100 percent ground beef was $2.36 in January 2009. As of December 2011, that price had risen to $2.92—a 23.7 percent increase and a new peak.   (Ground beef prices have risen every month since November 2009 – 26 months of price increases.)

Whole wheat bread prices from January 2009 to December 2011 increased about five percent (5.02 percent) from $1.97 to $2.07. (The inflation rate in December 2011 was 3.0 percent.)

Among the first 36 months of Obama’s presidency, the last four (September, October, November, December) showed the average price of one pound of whole wheat bread hovering slightly above two dollars.

Other refrigerated items like ice cream and bacon have increased by substantial amounts.

Ice cream prices, for a half-gallon, were $4.44 in January 2009 and $5.25 in December 2011, an increase of 19.1 percent.

One pound of sliced bacon in January 2009 was $3.73 and in December 2011 had climbed  $4.55, an increase of 22 percent. The price hit a high in September 2011 at $4.82 per pound.

nn

Economic Indicators Show President Obama’s Failing Record.

House Ways & Means Committee:

Earlier this week during his State of the Union address, President Obama said, “The defining issue of our time is how to keep that [American] promise alive.”

What he conveniently omitted from his speech was that his failed policies have done nothing to make it easier to achieve, or afford, success.  In fact, as the table below shows, the Obama Administration has left Americans worse off.

America Before President Obama Took Office and Now

  Before Now Change
Number of Unemployed1 12.0 Million 13.1 Million +9%
Long-Term Unemployed2 2.7 Million 5.6 Million +107%
Unemployment Rate3 7.8% 8.5% +9%
“High Unemployment” States4 22 43 +95%
Misery Index5 7.83 11.46 +46%
Price of Gas6 $1.85 $3.39 +83%
“Typical” Monthly Family Food Cost7 $974 $1,013 +4%
Median Value of Single-Family Home8 $196,600 $169,100 -14%
Rate of Mortgage Delinquencies9 6.62% 10.23% +55%
U.S. National Debt10 $10.6 Trillion $15.2 Trillion +43%

 

Number of unemployed in January 2009 and December 2011. http://www.bls.gov/data/#unemployment.
“Long-term unemployed” means for over 26 weeks; data for January 2009 and December 2011. http://www.bls.gov/data/#unemployment.
3 Unemployment rates in January 2009 and December 2011. http://www.bls.gov/data/#unemployment.
4 “High unemployment” means having a 3-month average unemployment rate of 6% or higher.  From the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ “Extended Benefits Trigger Notice” for January 18, 2009 and January 22, 2012. http://www.ows.doleta.gov/unemploy/trigger/2009/trig_011809.html and http://ows.doleta.gov/unemploy/euc_trigger/2012/euc_012212.html.
5 The “Misery Index” equals unemployment plus inflation.  For January 2009 and December 2012.  http://www.miseryindex.us/indexbymonth.asp.
Average retail price per gallon, January 2009 week 3 and January 2012 week 4. http://www.eia.gov/dnav/pet/hist/LeafHandler.ashx?n=PET&s=EMM_EPMR_PTE_NUS_DPG&f=W.
7 U.S. Department of Agriculture, values represent monthly “moderate” cost per family of four for January 2009 and November 2011. http://www.cnpp.usda.gov/USDAFoodCost-Home.htm.
8 U.S. median sales price of existing single-family homes for metropolitan areas for 2008 and 2011 Q3. http://www.realtor.org/research/research/metroprice.
9 Residential mortgage delinquencies (real estate loans) for 2008 Q4 and 2011 Q3. http://www.federalreserve.gov/releases/chargeoff/default.htm.

10 Values for January 21, 2009 and January 23, 2012.  http://www.treasurydirect.gov/NP/BPDLogin?application=np.