I believe that this is the first time since Barack Obama took office that the rate has fallen below 8.0% and for the President it couldn’t come at a more opportune time. After his horrendous performance in the debate with Mitt Romney this week where the dismal economic performance of the country was the focus, one of the major talking point for the Romney campaign, an 8%+ jobless rate, is now off of the table.
Am I claiming collusion between the BLS and the Obama campaign with the release of this surprising report on the condition of the US labor market? Absolutely not! But here is my question that perhaps one of the nations sterling economic forecasters can help me answer.
Prior to the release this morning the median estimate in a survey of 92 of who I would suppose are considered to be the nations top economists predicted a non-farm payroll increase of 115,000. This same group of forecasters also predicted that the unemployment rate would rise to 8.2%.
So I would appreciate if there is someone out there who can adequately explain to me and other cynical minds who may also have a question about this the following:
How does a non-farm payroll number that comes in 1,000 jobs below the consensus (although there was an upward revision to the previous month of about 80,000) result in a a drop in the unemployment rate from 8.1% to 7.8%?
I am sure that there is a logical explanation besides my suspicions of a political component so for anyone out there who can help me with this, I thank you in advance for your help!