The economy added 244,000 new jobs in April, but the unemployment rate climbed to 9.0% all because "more people are looking for work".  I am also hearing the spin that "the numbers aren't great, but the direction is good."  That is the mantra being spun on the networks this morning.


The civilian employment ratio has not improved, and in fact it is now starting to tail downward again. 

 The U6 rate which is the broadest indicator of unemployment which includes unemployed, those working part time wanting full time work, and "discouraged workers" (those who have given up looking), is climbing upwards again.

The number of people who have given up or are discouraged is actually climbing, not falling. 

 Couple this with the reality that our economy has to add thousands of new jobs each month just to keep pace with the growth in population, and the story is a bit more clear:  Jobs might be growing, but well below the rate of growth needed to improve the unemployment situation.  Secondly, given the reduction is hours worked by each employed person, one could say we are becoming a nation of part time workers.  If I am a betting man, this is likely where the growth in jobs took place. 

 One month does not make a trend, but should the May and June numbers show similar trends or that the employment ratio of our population is merely fluctuating within an ugly band of misery, all bets are off.