You know, I have this annoying habit and can't help myself. I love statistics, numbers, charts and things of such nature. Even though I announced my self-imposed exodus from blogging a few weeks ago, somehow I can't drag myself away on a permanent basis.
So, with that in mind, I took a few hours out of my day and compiled unemployment claims data going back to late 2007. I then created a couple of charts which Nate has helped me to share with you here on the Economic Edge.
First, there's a chart depicting total continuing UC claims on a weekly basis.
Second, there's a chart for total UC claims on a weekly basis.
These numbers are NOT seasonally adjusted; they are the raw data released by the Department of Labor in its weekly initial claims report.
What you see is a slow but steady climb in continuing EUC (Emergency Unemployment Compensation) claims beginning in March 2009, and a dramatic spike in extended UC benefit filings beginning this past summer. Note that the amount of extended claims filings recently surpassed initial claims filings during some weeks. Soon, I expect EUC continuing claims to do the same in reference to regular continuing claims.
Clearly you are NOT seeing an improvement in employment. Rather, the opposite is occurring and it's getting much, MUCH worse. If you want to know what I think the near future holds, take a look at last January's filings. That ought to give you a hint.
EUC claims, in my opinion, are the DOL's "off-balance sheet", akin to SIVs, financial institution off-balance sheets.
It's a perverted game of "job market hide-and-seek."
In a nutshell what Point’s charts are showing is that the total combined regular AND Emergency claims is still growing, and that’s despite thousands of people falling completely off the backside of the rolls.
Thanks for the charts and analysis, Point. It’s too bad that the mainstream media can’t do a little digging to put two and two together. It’s also too bad that our own government doesn’t admit the problems we face… of course that would mean admitting that their debt to solve a debt problem ways aren’t working. Hey, nothing but blue skies!
ELO - Mr.Blue Sky: