When the unemployment insurance benefits extension wasn't renewed you get headlines like this: "New jobless claims fall to near two-year low." After the benefits have been renewed you get headlines like this: "Jobless claims raise doubts about economy." Along with a note about the number of new claims rising "unexpectedly."

My question is whether anyone who writes these articles or who is interviewed for them actually knows any economics. As I have pointed out before, these changes involve people deciding whether to file for benefits. Why would whether someone is going to leave their job and file for benefits be related to how long that they can get benefits? Do I really need to give a hint on this?

Here is an interesting news report.

The U.S. unemployment situation becomes ever more complex the more you dig into it.

It's far from simply a problem of there not being enough jobs for people to do.

In fact, since the middle of 2009 the number of job openings has risen at twice the rate of actual hires, according to the Wall Street Journal. Despite the massive pool of unemployed Americans, there's a growing number of unfilled positions.

Shouldn't the glut of jobless Americans be immediately filling any available job as it appears?

Well, it's not happening that way. Many companies are actually having a hard time filling open positions, and there are many factors at play behind this. . . .

Some workers agree that unemployment benefits make them less likely to take whatever job comes along, particularly when those jobs don't pay much. Michael Hatchell, a 52-year-old mechanic in Lumberton, N.C., says he turned down more than a dozen offers during the 59 weeks he was unemployed, because they didn't pay more than the $450 a week he was collecting in benefits. One auto-parts store, he says, offered him $7.75 an hour, which amounts to only $310 a week for 40 hours.

"I was not going to put myself in a situation where I was making that small of a wage," says Mr. Hatchell. He has since found a better-paying job at a different auto-parts dealer. . . .



Blogger TooMuchTime said...

Not to us, you don't. Basically, news readers and news room denizens have no comprehension of how a free economy works. They believe the president should "manage the economy." If they would just read any book on economics by Thomas Sowell, they might get it. But I wouldn't hold my breath.

8/08/2010 10:34 PM  

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