Re: Friday’s big number … what to expect (if the BLS doesn’t hide-the-weinie).

Hurricane Sandy has put the BLS between a rock and a hard place.

There are 3 scenarios:

1) The BLS hides behind Sandy’s skirt-tails and  takes an incomplete — failing to report the most important number in the most important election … until the election is over.  Just imagine if Obama wins and the BLS reports next week (or next month)  that the unemployment rate went back up to 7.9% or 8% or higher.

2) The BLS rushes a preliminary number that shows the unemployment rate going down to, say,  7.8% … and then revises it upward after the election. Think, the BLS streak of under-reporting initial unemployment claims.

3) The BLS reports that the unemployment rate went down again as still another 850,000 folks find part-time work somewhere, someplace … and, Jack Welch goes nuts.

4)  The BLS reports on time that the unemployment rate went up and Obama orders a DOJ investigation.

* * * * *
My bet: They’ll report on time that the unemployment rate clicked up to 7.9% …  it’s the best “managed” number …. let’s Obama crow that it’s under the magic 8% … and, let’s Romney point out that it’s going in the wrong direction.

Based on the numbers, I’d expect the unemploymen rate to bounce back up to at least 8%.

Here’s my logic…

Initial unemployment claims should track pretty closely with the reported unemployment rate, right?

Well, they do usually … but didn’t last month when the miraculous 7.8% was reported.

Just eyeballing the chart below – which maps the 4-week moving average of initial claims against the unemployment rate – one might have expected an unemployment rate of just over 8% … not 7.8%

Looking forward to this Friday’s unemployment rate … based on the 4-week moving average of initial claims … the unemployment rate should pop back to at least 7.9% … maybe back over over 8%.

That is, unless Welch is right and the BLS is cookin’ the books.

image

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2 Responses to “Re: Friday’s big number … what to expect (if the BLS doesn’t hide-the-weinie).”

  1. Old song … BLS still under-reporting initial unemployment claims. « The Homa Files Says:

    […] put today’s number in context. let’s flashback to the chart in yesterday’s post […]

  2. 7.9% « The Homa Files Says:

    […] Earlier this week, we posted Re: Friday’s big number … what to expect (if the BLS doesn’t hide-the-weinie). […]

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