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What is the Real Unemployment Rate?

Similar variations of this adjusted unemployment rate make headlines now and again. Our colleague Ed Luce, for instance, noted in December that “if the same number of people were seeking work today as in 2007, the jobless rate would be 11 per cent”.

But what is striking about the broken line above isn’t where it now ends — at 10.3 per cent — but rather the lack of any meaningful, sustained improvement for more than two years.

This alternative measure has remained above 10 per cent since September 2009, and aside from a bit of skittishness (some of which is down to uncaptured seasonality) has mostly just moved sideways.

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