In the words of Woody Allen, it's miserable but not horrible. Another 633,000 American jobs were lost last month and the U.S. unemployment rate rose to 8.5 percent from 8.1 percent the previous month. That's the highest rate in a quarter century - and it's really a lot worse than that. When accounting for people who are now looking for a job, working part-time because they cannot find full-time work or are not actively working, the rate is nearly 16 percent. From the NYT:
More than two million jobs disappeared in the first quarter of the year, and as the downturn drags on and the ranks of the unemployed swell, people are beginning to languish without work. Some 24 percent of people have been unemployed for six months or more, and fewer and fewer are able to find a job after less than five weeks of looking. Still, economists said they believed the rate of job losses would moderate slightly by summer as the government's measures to patch up the financial system, revive consumer spending and put people to work wash through the economy.
In the first few minutes of trading, the Dow is actually up a few points. Wall Street had been expecting the bad numbers.