Unemployment Actually on Its Way up in Rhode Island


Once again, my monthly employment post for RIFreedom.org shows that Rhode Island’s unemployment rate would be going up right now without our loss of labor force. ┬áIn fact, as the third chart shows, we’d have hit 8.3% unemployment in November if the labor force hadn’t changed since before the recession, which is the level that the official unemployment rate reported back in February/March 2014.


  • Russ

    This is nonsense without accounting for those leaving the labor force for reasons other than the inability to find work. In fact, most of the difference in Justin’s graph is related to boomers retiring or leaving the workforce because of poor health. Perhaps it’s a “fundamental problem” with the rate, but it’s not nearly as significant as Justin would have you believe.

    “In total, the number of people not in the labor force rose by 12.6 million (16 percent) from the fourth quarter of 2007 to the fourth quarter of 2013. About 5.5 million more people (a 16 percent increase) are retired, 2.9 million (a 23 percent increase) are disabled or ill, and 2.5 million (a 19 percent increase) are in school. An additional 161,000 are taking care of their family or house, and an additional 99,000 are not in the labor force for other reasons. The fraction who say they want a job has risen the most (32 percent) but has contributed only 11 percent to the total change.”