Slight Improvement in Labor Market Situation

It’s a sign of the times that small numbers of job losses count as good news, but that’s what we’ve got:

The Labor Department reported Friday that the United States economy shed 11,000 jobs in November, and the unemployment rate fell to 10 percent, down from 10.2 percent in October.

The government also significantly revised September and October numbers. September was adjusted to show a loss of 139,000 jobs instead of 219,000, and October 111,000 instead of 190,000.

Those revisions, in particular, are quite significant and indicate that the situation has been a bit less bad for the past couple of months than we thought. But this is still a pretty bleak situation. If you’re about to complete your last semester of college, for example, then you’re still looking at a labor market with no net hiring and a huge backlog of unemployed people you need to compete with for whatever gross job opening emerge.