In a column describing how the Obama economy is Built to Stall, Wall Street Journal editors noted a minor uptick in the size of the labor market last month.
The rare good news is that the overall labor market expanded with 642,000 new entrants, and the labor force participation rate rose to 63.8% from 63.6% in April. This means that more workers have re-entered the job market, perhaps because they believe they can find a job or because their 99 weeks of jobless benefits have finally run out. The bad news is that 63.8% is still about two percentage points—about three million fewer workers—below the modern norm.
By extending jobless benefits, have politicians artificially improved the unemployment rate over these last few years? Neat trick.