Friday, October 08, 2004

Why the job numbers don't mean anything

The job numbers for september are out and they don't look good

U.S. businesses added 96,000 jobs to payrolls in September, the government reported on Friday, a weaker-than-expected total that was expected to sharpen a presidential debate later in the day over the economy's direction.

The Labor Department report, showing the unemployment rate in September held steady at 5.4 percent, will provide fodder for the second debate between President Bush and Democratic Presidential contender Sen. John Kerry , the first one in which the candidates are expected to discuss economic policy

I know I'm going to get booed and hissed at but, there numbers mean nothing. Bare with me for a second. Do you know how these numbers are collected? The government calls companies and asks them how many people they hire and fire or layoff. Good way to go about it. The problem, they only call a certain few, it's a couple of hundred, I can't remember the exact number, very large corporations. I didn't know that until recently.

Now, if the above is true, and you can check the Labor Department website, then the numbers mean nothing. Why? Because most of the businesses in the country are small businesses, I think it's around 21 million, and most people work for small businesses, not large corparations. So, these numbers are meaningless.

Until the government starts asking the companies that acurate hire and fire most of the people in the country, we will never have an actual guage of how well the country is doing.