First Friday Employment Post

Here's the latest employment graph:

It looks like within a couple of months, the number of people employed will be less than at the depths of the post-911 recession--this despite an increase in population of about 11 million since 2003.

It also does not look like discouraged workers are beginning to look for work again. The numbers of long-term unemployed remained about the same, and the number out of the workforce has increased since last month.

If there is any bright side, it looks like the slope of the establishment survey line is beginning to shallow out slightly, though the household survey has not done the same. And both lines are still on a steep downward trajectory. A rough calculation of the average of the establishment line from October 2008 to July 2009 shows a monthly decline of about 0.593 million jobs lost per month. The same calculation over the last three months, July 2009 to October 2009, yields an average of about 0.136 million jobs lost per month--still a decline, but the slope is leveling off. The household data shows almost no change, if not a slight uptick in unemployment. The earlier period saw an average loss of 0.51 jobs per month, the most recent 3 months show a 0.59 jobs lost per month.