Monday, May 06, 2013

When I use a survey, said Humpty Dumpty ...

Hey, kids! Of the two Bureau of Labor Statistics surveys reported the first Friday of each month in the eagerly awaited* report on jobs and joblessness, which one should the right-thinking young person take more seriously? Is it ...

The Household Survey reaches deeper into the recesses of the economy than does the Establishment Survey. It also does not involve conjuring jobs out of thin air, a la the Establishment Survey's "birth/death model."

Well, that seems pretty clear. It's the household survey, which produces the unemployment rate, not the establishment survey, which produces the number of jobs added or lost. But what did it look like last October? Oh NOES!!!!!

The professional economists and the press usually emphasize the establishment survey because it is viewed as less volatile. ... Back when President Bush presided over a jobless recovery, the household survey tended to show better news. At the time, every media organization carefully emphasized the establishment numbers, and warned that the household numbers are suspect. That, of course, is what happens when a Republican is in office. For President Obama, you can expect a household survey lovefest.

So, to sum things up, if the household survey makes the Kenyan Muslim commie look worser, it's better, but if it makes him look gooder, it's badder. Got it? This could be on the final.

* Not quite an "important psychological barrier," but close.



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