Great Depression-Level Unemployment in America

Friday, June 3, 2011
By Paul Martin

by Washington’s Blog
Global Research
June 3, 2011

Unemployment During the Great Depression Has Been Overstated and Current Unemployment Understated (We’ve Now Got Depression-Level Unemployment)

The commonly-accepted unemployment figures for the Great Depression are overstated.

Specifically, government workers were counted as unemployed by Stanley Lebergott (the BLS economist who put together the most widely used numbers) … even though gainfully employed and receiving a pay check.

If we’re trying to compare current unemployment figures with the Great Depression, the calculations of economists such as Michael Darby are more accurate.

Here is a comparison of Lebergott and Darby’s unemployment figures:

Year Lebergott Darby

1929 3.2% 3.2%

1930 8.7% 8.7%

1931 15.9% 15.3%

1932 23.6% 22.9%

1933 24.9% 20.6%

1934 21.7% 16.0%

1935 20.1% 14.2%

1936 16.9% 9.9%

1937 14.3% 9.1%

1938 19.0% 12.5%

1939 17.2% 11.3%

1940 14.6% 9.5%

The Rest…HERE

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