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Unemployment drops a bit, but…

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By Doug Powers  •  April 5, 2013 12:01 PM

**Written by Doug Powers

In regards to the latest jobs report, the White House will put much of their focus on the slight drop in the unemployment rate. The reason for that however isn’t because America is going back to work.

Tyler Durden at Zero Hedge:

Moments ago the March Non-farm payroll hit and it was a doozy, printing at 88K, below the lowest forecast of 100K, well below the expected number of 190K, and a tragedy compared to the February revised print of 268K (was 236K). This was the biggest miss to expectations since December 2009 and the worst print since June 2012. The unemployment rate declined to 7.6%, but this was due entirely to the collapse in the labor force participation rate, which declined by 20 bps to 63.3%, a new 30 year low.

Start the spin machine.

To where is the workforce disappearing? Here’s one place:

The number of American workers collecting federal disability payments climbed to yet another record of 8,853,614 in March, up from 8,840,427 in February, according to newly released data from the Social Security Administration.

That means there are more than 3 times as many Americans taking disability payments as there are people living in the city of Chicago, which according to the Census Bureau has a population of 2,707,120.

For the White House, “sequester” is the new “Bush’s fault”:

It is important to bear in mind that the March household and payroll surveys are the first monthly surveys to look at employment since the beginning of sequestration. While the recovery was gaining traction before sequestration took effect, these arbitrary and unnecessary cuts to government services will be a headwind in the months to come, and will cut key investments in the Nation’s future competitiveness. The Congressional Budget Office has estimated that the sequester will reduce employment by 750,000 full-time equivalent jobs by the end of the year.

In that case, maybe the White House shouldn’t have proposed the idea for sequestration.

Over at Hot Air, Ed Morrissey shoots down the scapegoats:

Sequestration didn’t create this, and for that matter, neither did the payroll tax cut. Consumer spending rose in January and consumer sentiment rose in February, remember? We just have a lousy economy, strangled by regulation that keeps investors from putting capital into efforts that create jobs.

I’m sure things will pick up once the economy fully absorbs Obamacare — or, most likely, the other way around.

**Written by Doug Powers

Twitter @ThePowersThatBe

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