While largely ineffective at maths, I am good with stats, number patterns, and maths. Not good as in I am a genius, but rather I can read an understand them.
That’s why this post at FiveThirtyEight – bringing together economies and US politics – was a fascinating read. Rather than follow two common trends in political discourse these days (‘US manufacturing is dying’ and ‘high US unemployment is only due primarily to the recession’) it proposes something that seems to be rather logical (in hindsight). The US is going through their jobless recovery (in which the economy is beginning to recover without the creation of new jobs and, thus, a falling unemployment rate) because of a labour market realignment brought about due to the US manufacturing industry.
In previous recession, the unemployment rate has dropped dramatically because all those employees sacked during the recession got their jobs back. In this latest recession, due to the modernisation of the manufacturing industry, people aren’t finding their old jobs available primarily because they aren’t needed anymore. It takes less people to do the same work now. So the a significant part of the higher unemployment rate is due to an industry no longer requiring labour.
The evidence, graphs, and whatnot is provided in the post. A very interesting read. FiveThirtyEight is probably my favourite website to visit (when they have new material). The owner of the blog, as an aside note, has put two renowned pollsters in the US out of business due to dodgey polling they have done. He runs all their data through algorithms and whatnot and can detect anomalies. It’s very insightful (check out those posts), and makes me very jealous of those with math-inclined brains.