Friday, September 2, 2011

Unemployment August: 9.1%

The current employment recession is by far the worst recession since WWII in percentage terms, and 2nd worst in terms of the unemployment rate (only the early '80s recession with a peak of 10.8 percent was worse).

The unemployment rate was unchanged at 9.1% (red line). The Labor Force Participation Rate increased to 64.0% in August (blue line). This is the percentage of the working age population in the labor force. The participation rate is well below the 66% to 67% rate that was normal over the last 20 years, although some of the decline is due to the aging population.

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