Nov 30 2017
06:32 am

According to the Wall Street Journal (via Humphrey on the Hill), Tennessee's 3% unemployment rate is "a bit of an illusion because the participation rate has been dropping” in the red states", including Tennessee.

"Tennessee’s recent record-low unemployment rate illustrates the red-state trend. It declined two full percentage points in just 12 months, hitting a historically low 3%. But the recession pushed many Tennesseans out of the workforce, and the workforce participation rate has trended down since. Almost 65% of the state’s population was in the workforce a decade ago. In 2017, that number was less than 61%."

H/T RoaneViews

reform4's picture

Opiod addiction.

Probably the #1 cause for lower participation in red states, and why they still feel economically depressed.

yellowdog's picture

And jobs that are meaningless

and/or do not pay enough to be worth the trouble.

Somebody's picture

Unemployment rates are still

Unemployment rates are still following the long-term downward trend that started early in the Obama administration, following the economic freefall that occurred at the end of Bush 43’s term.

There are always underlying factors that affect the margins of the overall unemployment trends.

Personally, however, I would avoid stumbling into the same sort of rhetoric used by the Republicans, where they endorsed every unemployment indicator when the rate was high and Obama was President, and then claimed the numbers were ‘fake’ or ‘didn’t factor in people who left the workforce’ when the trend reversed and unemployment steadily dropped during the last six years of Obama’s term.

The numbers are what they are, and unless you can demonstrate that the methodology for collecting and reporting them has been altered or manipulated, then they have just as much meaning as they did when rates were improving under Obama.

Republicans - especially under Trump - have abandoned science and fact-based information. Adopting their cherry-picking approach to interpreting unemployment figures only serves to bolster their ongoing gaslighting effort where opinions and facts interchangeable, and “victory” is achieved by redefining what’s “true.”

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