Does anyone really think the current economy and job market is as good as it was in 2007 when the unemployment rate was at the historically low level of 4.6%? So, then, why was the Labor Department able to report that the weekly jobless claims number, at 264,000, reached a 14-year low? Truly, an unbelievable drop of 23,000 in a single week. This despite the fact that the current unemployment rate is 1.3 percentage points higher than it was in 2007 at 5.9%.
Two things might explain this.
First, we could be seeing "number manipulations" in the run up to the November 4th elections. Let's not forget that Obama's Census Bureau was caught doing just that very thing before the 2012 elections. Therefore, there is no reason not to think that his Labor Department couldn't be doing the same with the unemployment claims number. Having a multi-year low in claims, with the mid-term elections only 2-1/2 weeks away is quite a coincidence. And, like the last time, the number juggling probably won't be exposed until months after the election.
The other reason might be the direct result of an increasing trend by American businesses towards hiring fewer full-time workers; and going with temporary help instead, or using temp services, contract labor, freelancers, consultants etc. All of which are not eligible for unemployment benefits when their services are no longer needed.
You can blame this trend of not hiring full time workers on ObamaCare.
Under the ObamaCare law, a business must provide health insurance to its full time employees or pay a tax (really, a fine) if it has more than 50 employees, all of which are working at least 30 hours a week. Hiring temporary help or contracting outside labor can easily keep small businesses and franchisees from reaching that 50 full-time worker threshold. It also means they don't have to subsidize FICA, unemployment insurance, or provide benefits such as paid vacations and pensions.
While some economists and politicians might think that lower jobless claims is a good thing, it may be the result of a growing trend towards avoiding employer-provided health insurance. Something that one of the chief architects of ObamaCare, Ezekiel Emanuel, recently predicted.
So, now we have a healthcare law that was supposed to increase the number of insured but, instead, is doing just the opposite. At the same time, it is putting American workers at risk because fewer of them will be eligible for unemployment benefits when laid off.
November 16: New Jobless Claims Fall to Lowest Since 2000: http://www.nytimes.com/2014/10/17/business/economy/new-unemployment-claims-fall-to-their-lowest-since-2000.html
US companies increasingly turning to temporary workers to fill positions: http://www.foxnews.com/us/2013/07/08/us-companies-increasingly-turning-to-temporary-workers-to-fill-positions/
For Many Americans, 'Temp' Work Becomes Permanent Way of Life: http://www.nbcnews.com/feature/in-plain-sight/many-americans-temp-work-becomes-permanent-way-life-n81071
Temporary jobs becoming a permanent fixture: http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/business/2013/07/07/temporary-jobs-becoming-permanent-fixture/2496585/
Labor Force Statistics from the Current Population Survey: http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNS14000000
Census 'faked' 2012 election jobs report: http://nypost.com/2013/11/18/census-faked-2012-election-jobs-report/
Obamacare architect: Law will cause ‘the end of employer-sponsored insurance’: http://dailycaller.com/2014/03/20/obamacare-architect-law-will-cause-the-end-of-employer-sponsored-insurance/