New labor report: 663,000 jobs lost last month, 2 million lost in 2009, unemployment at 25-year high.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the economy lost 663,000 jobs last month, as national unemployment rises to a 25-year high, at 8.5 percent. Two million jobs have been lost in the first three months of 2009 alone, compared to about 3 million lost in all of 2008; in total, 5.1 million jobs have been shed since the recession began in December 2007. The CalculatedRisk blog called today’s jobs report “extremely weak,” and used this chart to show how serious this recession is compared to past recessions:


However, as the New York Times notes, “Workers are starting to see tax credits from the $787 billion stimulus package show up in their paychecks, and government-financed projects to build bridges and repair roads are ramping up.”