The headline is today’s NH Union Leader is “Encouraging numbers in state’s unemployment rate.”
For the second month in a row, New Hampshire Democratic and Republican leaders boasted that their policies were responsible for a drop in the unemployment rate, despite figures which show a lower number of jobs.
According to the report on May employment released yesterday by the Bureau of Economic and Labor Statistics, the number of employed residents dropped by 1460 from April to May, while the number counted as unemployed dropped by 520. The net effect is a change in the “preliminary seasonally adjusted unemployment rate” from 4.9% to 4.8%.
“This is clear evidence that our economic strategy here in New Hampshire is working,” said Gov. John Lynch, to the news that the state had fewer jobs in May than it did in April.
“It is encouraging to see more New Hampshire residents going back to work,” said House GOP Leader D.J. Bettencourt, likewise ignoring the statistics while praising his party’s role in bringing them about. “The New Hampshire Advantage is real and is tangible and we must continue to protect and preserve it. Less government, lower taxes and less spending results in greater job growth.”
To be fair, the statistics do show a 1% increase in jobs over the past 12 months. But it’s the unemployment rate that’s getting the attention it doesn’t quite deserve.