March unemployment numbers

The Bureau of Labor Statistics released its March unemployment numbers on Friday, and the news is grim:

The unemployment rate rose from 4.8 to 5.1 percent in March, and nonfarm payroll employment continued to trend down (-80,000), the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the U.S. Department of Labor reported today. Over the past 3 months, payroll employment has declined by 232,000. In March, employment continued to fall in construction, manufacturing, and employment services, while health care, food services, and mining added jobs. Average hourly earnings rose by 5 cents, or 0.3 percent, over the month.

The full BLS summary is here.

A feature article in the current issue of D&S, A New WPA?, describes “employer of last resort” full-employment schemes—a big-picture policy proposal that the left can get behind. There are nifty WPA-era graphics, too.

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