Mounting Unemployment in America, Hundreds of Thousands Drop out of the Workforce
By Andre Damon
April 06, 2013
The US economy added 88,000 jobs in March, far fewer than the previous month and less than half the total economists had predicted, according to the Labor Department’s latest jobs report. The figures point to deepening slump in the United States and the continuing high levels of joblessness, even as the government launches a new round of austerity.
According to the Labor Department’s report, a staggering 496,000 people dropped out of the labor force in March, presumably for the most part because they concluded that work was not available. Perversely, this brought the official unemployment rate—based on the number of people recently and actively looking for work–down to 7.6 percent.
The March figures were the first reported since the beginning of $1.2 trillion in spending cuts, which are being phased in gradually. Some 7,000 government jobs were lost during the month, adding to the more than 700,000 such jobs eliminated since 2008.
While the sequester cuts are only beginning to be felt, over one million federal workers are set to begin furloughs this month. According to the Congressional Budget Office, the sequester cuts are going to result in the equivalent of 750,000 full-time job losses throughout the US economy.