Just to review, the shaded areas represent the time between elections, so Obama was elected in November, 2008. The vertical red and blue lines represent the swearing-in of the president in January of 2001 and 2009. The
Analysis: As you can see the two lines went in opposite directions this month. According to Employers, we've added almost a quarter of a million jobs last month. According to Households, we lost 190,000 jobs.
The line on NPR this morning looked at the Employer's data and said: We have lots of new jobs! When asked why the unemployment rate, now standing at 9%, went up, they looked at the Household data and the number of people who have entered or reentered the job pool, and said: More people looking means more unemployed. However this seems to me to be mixing apples and oranges. If you look at the Household number for the number of people looking for jobs, it seems to me you should also look at the Household number that says we lost close to 200K jobs this month. That's how the unemployment rate is calculated.
However, looking at the numbers, it appears that NPR pretty much flat-out lied. Remember, the question was: Why did the unemployment rate go up when jobs increased? and the answer was: Because more people entered and reentered the labor force. They also specifically said that it was actually a good sign, because more people looking, means a good mood change.
So what are the real numbers--which NPR never mentions?
March April Change
Civilian Labor force: 153,406 153,421 15,000
Employed: 139,864 139,674 -190,000
So, looking at those numbers, what would you attribute the increase in the unemployment rate? The 15K increase in the number of people looking for work? Or the 190K decrease in the number of jobs?