Fresh Paint
Thursday, September 02, 2004
Hardly Working
Out painting all day with a friend -- hot -- humid -- but no bugs. Not sure I did what I wanted to do, but it hardly matters.

Home now, trying to catch up, and worrying again about a friend in Florida.

Today's unemployment report bothered me a lot -- and the spin on it bothered me even more -- because they seemed to be blaming the jump of 19,000 in initial claims on Hurricane Charley. This is not accurate. The actual state-by-state numbers lag a week, so let's look a little closer:

Last week (ending Aug. 21), seasonally adjusted up 10,000/ non-adjusted up 5,131. This week totals, seasonally adjusted figure up 19,000/ non-adjusted up 3,805.

This week's list of worst-hit states for week ending Aug. 21 shows the following interesting table:
State/Change/State Supplied Comment

TX/+1,095/Layoffs in the transportation, insurance, and manufacturing industries.

FL/+1,820/Layoffs in the trade, service, and manufacturing industries. There were 2,645 claims filed as a result of Hurricane Charley.

GA/+2,194/Layoffs in the automobile and transportation equipment industries.

MO/+3,202/Layoffs in the transportation industry.
So I guess there was a hurricane in Missouri too. On the brighter side, NC and VA had fewer layoffs (about 2,160).

On top of all this, no one is shopping at Wal-Mart, (Retailers Report Disappointing Sales, which has to make the Bushies shudder, though they're blaming it on higher fuel costs. I don't know a teen who wouldn't find a way to get to Wal-Mart before the start of the school year unless they just had no money at all, folks out of work, dead stoney broke.

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