|Untagged||3 Aug 2012|
|County Employment Numbers Still Being Made Up by allegheny|
In Policy Brief Vol. 12, No.34, we pointed out the sham in the way the Labor Department is constructing household employment numbers. That was on July 9 of this year and included data through the May employment reports. Now comes the data for June and we discover that the same dishonest methodology is still being used.
For every metro area in the state comprised of more than one county the inappropriate methodology is being used. For the Pittsburgh MSA there are seven counties. The June 2011 to June 2012 percentage change in employment ranges from 2.24 to 2.26, rounded to the nearest hundredth. The MSA total was 2.25 percent. Because the employment numbers are rounded to the nearest 100, the calculations for each county can vary slightly from the 2.25 MSA percentage change. But it is obvious that the methodology employed is to calculate the percentage change for a year ago and then round the new employment to the nearest 100. For example, Armstrong county employment rose from 30,900 to 31,600. A 2.25 percent change would bring the new number to 31,595. Rounded up to 31,600 it gives an increase of 2.26 percent.
Across the state in the Harrisburg MSA, in the Allentown-Bethlehem MSA and in the Philadelphia MSA, we find the exact same pattern. For all counties in the Harrisburg MSA employment rose 0.9 percent rounded to the nearest 10th. In Allentown-Bethlehem, all gained 2.72 to 2.78 percent. And in Philadelphia, all counties were up between 1.12 and 1.15 percent from June 2011 to June 2012.
The odds of all counties in an MSA having statistically the same employment gains over the last 12 months are too low to be imaginable. By forcing all counties to have the same employment gains, the numbers are highly questionable. And since employment, when combined with the unemployment number, is part of the civilian labor force, which is then used to calculate the unemployment rate, means that we cannot put much confidence in the monthly county unemployment rates.