While the September jobs number was an absolute disaster, here is the real punchline: in September, the people not in the labor force soared by a whopping 579,000 to a record 94.6 million, up from the previous record 94.0, even as number of people employed – according to the household survey used to calculate the “5.1%” unemployment rate – tumbled by 236,000 to 148.8 million.
And as a result of this latest surge in people who aren’t working, nor want to work, the participation rate crashed yet again, and sliding from 62.6% to 62.4%, it was the lowest since October 1977.
Finally, if anyone is still confused where there is no job growth in the US, here is the answer: the amount of slack in the labor force is simply breathtaking.
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