Saturday, 9 May 2009

US unemployment hits 8.9 percent

The rate of increase of US unemployment is staggering. It is quite unlike anything experienced in decades.

If US unemployment continues to increase at this speed, it could easily hit 10 percent by the autumn.


mark said...

Agreed, and to this number you can add back in all the discouraged workers as well as those massively underemployed.

Also, my understanding is that unemployment in the US is particularly devastating for those involved as the US lacks the safety-nets of Europe - i.e. it can lead to destitution much quicker than in the UK.

I don't see green shoots. The world economy through the prism I look through seems to be getting worse. But the markets don't agree and seem to love all the bad news. I don't understand this. I think the markets are just plain wrong but perhaps on the margin people are moving out of cash into assets as an inflation play.

It all just seems a bit random.

Anonymous said...

I think to understand what is happening you first have to understand the social and economic forces at play. I call it the whirlpool effect: economies do not exist as one big, giant thing. They are in fact a set of whirlpools. Get into the whirlpool, and you spin to the centre and do well. Be unfortunate enough not to be anywhere near a whirlpool, and you will fester in poverty. What is happening right now - and why the markets are pretending things are okay - is that people are focusing on their whirlpools. Whirlpools can be very happy, self-contained places while outside the pools pure misery and deprivation.

Look at what the Labour gov, said this week: they no longer care about child poverty. Looking after the whirlpool, guv!

I was in Chelsea, London the other week. Another whirlpool: and it was jammed with very rich people eating very nice food and wearing very nice clothes living in very nice homes looking very healthy, wealthy and happy. Mmmm! Mmmm! Ma whirlpool is just right. Pay attention to the 'whirlpool effect'.