Thursday, October 11, 2012

Will The Real Jobless Benefit Claims Number Please Step Forward?

There's no B.S. like the b.s. from the BLS   - My name is Dave In Denver and I approve this blog post
The headline report from all the news services reads:  "Jobless Claims Plunge To New Four-Year Low," among other misleading statements.  That is also the headline report that will be reported to the hoi polloi who watch their local nightly news rather than stay current with what's going on with Snooki.  That is also the headline that will be read by those who actually pick up a newspaper tomorrow (the dwindling few in our society who actually try to keep up with the news).

But, alas, just like all the other economic reporting by the Government, this jobless claims headline is complete bullshit.  The BLS itself, in post-report comments, states that "a single large state was responsible for most of the drop in claims."  As it turns out, this "large" unidentified State is thought to be California:
As a result, there is an accumulation of claims that are likely submitted over a period of several weeks but not processed until the turn of the quarter. Apparently, the state in question (and it pretty much has to be California to account for anything close to 30,000) forgot to include that stockpile of unprocessed claims in their tally for this week (which is the first week of a new calendar quarter). Since the seasonal factors expected an unadjusted surge of almost 20% in the period to account for the quarterly filing pattern, failure to adhere to that pattern in the raw data (unadjusted claims were only up 8.6%) creates a big drop seasonally adjusted  (LINK)
Once again, the Government leaves out facts in reporting the headlines and most of the financial media analysts choose to debate the headline number, which is clearly a false number, rather than dig for and discuss the truth.  Although, I'm told that Steve Liesman, CNBC's obsequiously ubiquitous apologist for all headline economic reports, was uncharacteristically speechless over this headline report.  Liesman is one of those guys with whom it is apparent that his brains fell out of head along with his hair.

Interestingly, the "unadjusted" claims number for the reporting week showed an increase of 25,990 claims vs. the previous week.  I would argue that the unadjusted number would be a lot more relevant since the headline number did not include from California a big piece of data that is used for the "seaonal adjustments" calculation and we have no earthly idea how the BLS calculates its "seasonal adjustments" OR even if the theories underlying the calculations for these adjustments make any rational sense.  Here's the BLS report:  LINK

I've been dragging this article around from the Washington Post so I decided to post it today.  It discusses the degree to which members of Congress have - on average - managed to increase their wealth by a substantial amount over the last 8 years, while the 99% class in this country has seen its wealth decline and the its average personal income decline.  This article alone explains in economic terms why it doesn't matter which Party is in control of the White House OR Congress:  LINK

Despite that article, I still can't figure out how Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, a Mormon from Nevada, managed to go from being pretty much penniless to worth several million dollars since his first term in the Senate commenced in 1987.  Here's a guy who's law practice was in shambles and who barely had a pot in which to piss and now he's part of the .5%'ers (point five percenters).  Anyone got any explanation for that?  I don't and neither do the people I know who have lived in Nevada their whole life.  I will say, I wonder if Reid will secretly support his faith and vote for his Brother Romney in November...


  1. when you look at Calif sales tax revenues being down, and hear stories of how companies are moving out of Calif and all the other problems we had better expect numbers "soft" out of CA.

    there are just too many "coincidences" occurring now with govt information.

    If you (are one of us) and peel back the onion you know the truth (or the golden truth)

  2. Aumn reports a 28% increase in silver production and 27% increase in gold. The shares traded up initially but closed in the negative. The market cap is a laughing stock of 175mm. If this little junior could ever turn a profit for the quarter I think we could see a takeoff like Ppp recently experienced.

    1. Lot of juniors are ridiculously undervalued. But AUMN is producing and management is starting to deliver on promises. Should be an easy double from here, with silver not moving up much. Triple if silver can get to $50 w/in the next 6-12 months.