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Jobless Numbers Murky. GAO Says Data Not Reliable

If the Democratic Party and the Obama Administration can’t figure out how many jobs were saved or created, why should we trust them with more of our money? Why should the American people believe that spending an additional $800 billion in health care, will be deficit neutral? Obama’s hope has begun to meet reality. 


Obama Administration’s Claims Of Jobs Saved Or Created “So Murky It Can Never Be Verified.” “Obama faces souring public opinion over his handling of the economy, which has shed 1.6 million jobs since the stimulus was signed in February. That total has far overshadowed White House announcements estimating the effort has saved 150,000 jobs, a figure that is so murky it can never be verified.” (Brett J. Blackledge & Matt Apuzzo, “Spin Meter: Obama’s New ‘Accelerated’ Recovery Plan Is Neither New Nor Accelerated,” The Associated Press, 6/9/09)

Job Count From Contractors Will Be Based On Their “Best Guess” Of Whether Stimulus Saved Jobs. “Recipients won’t be asked to differentiate between jobs created and jobs saved, officials said. They will have to give their best guess as to whether a job would have been lost had it not been for stimulus funding.” (Elizabeth Williamson and Louise Rodnofsky, “U.S. To Post Reports On Stimulus Jobs Online,” The Wall Street Journal, 9/23/09)

GAO Says State Data May Not Be Reliable Due To Large Amount Of Information. “The volume of information required for a report due next month may be creating problems with the quality of data, the Government Accountability Office said in a special report. ‘This unprecedented level of detailed information to be reported by a large number of recipients into a new centralized reporting system raises possible risk for the quality and reliability of these data,’ said the report.”  (“Worries Arise About Quality Of U.S. Stimulus Data,” Reuters, 9/23/09)

And States Will Have Different Definitions Of What Characterizes “Created Or Saved” Job. “But the jobs data may vary because each state has different ways of defining what a job saved or created is. For instance, one state could tally a new job when a worker works 30 hours a week on a stimulus project, while another state could require that a new job only comes when a worker puts in at least 40 hours, said Craig Jennings, a senior policy analyst at OMBWatch.” (Walter Alarkon and Kiera McCaffrey, “States Rushing To Meet Stimulus Deadline,” The Hill, 8/22/09)


Since Stimulus Was Passed, America Has Lost Over 2.6 Million Jobs. (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, www.bls.gov, Accessed 10/13/09)

September Worse Than Expected: 263,000 Jobs Lost, Unemployment Climbed To 9.8 Percent. “Employers eliminated more jobs than expected last month as the unemployment rate climbed to 9.8%, another sign that a rapid recovery in the labor market is unlikely.  Nonfarm payrolls declined by 263,000 in September, the Labor Department said Friday, noting that the largest job losses were in construction, manufacturing, retail trade and government. Economists surveyed by Dow Jones Newswires survey had expected a 175,000 decrease.” (Maya Jackson Randall, “Jobs Cuts Unexpectedly Accelerate,” The Wall Street Journal, 10/2/09)

Unemployment Rate Would Be Higher If 571,000 Discouraged Workers Counted. “The unemployment rate for September — 9.8 percent — also understates the damage. It would have been higher but for the fact that 571,000 people dropped out of the work force last month — in general, it’s assumed, because they’ve despaired of finding work. If they had kept looking, they would have been counted as unemployed.” (Editorial, “Wanted: Leadership On Jobs,” The New York Times, 10/4/09)

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