The correct measure of unemployment

You may have seen Gov. Scott Walker triumphantly announcing this state’s 2.8 percent unemployment rate.

I prefer a better measurement, the U6 rate, which includes, to quote the U.S. Department of Labor, “total unemployed, plus all marginally attached workers, plus total employed part time for economic reasons, as a percent of the civilian labor force plus all marginally attached workers.” That means those who are working part-time though they want to work full-time, as well as those who have stopped looking for work.

And that looks like this (compared with the official unemployment rate, the “U3” rate), averaged from the second quarter of 2017 through the first quarter of this year:

Certainly Wisconsin is better off than the national average and most states, but the employment situation isn’t as good as those running for reelection would have you believe. Of course, the opposition party in Madison was in charge when the U6 rate was well beyond 10 percent, thanks to their handiwork of $2.2 BILLION in tax increases and the economic ineptitude of the Obama administration.

 

 

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