According to the DomPost yesterday, there are now 105,000 jobless in New Zealand. (I wish they would use the correct terminology. There are 105,000 officially 'unemployed' but 193,000 officially 'jobless'.) 30,508 are receiving the unemployment benefit. 29 percent of the unemployed.
In the US around 10 million are unemployed yet only 625,000 appear to be receiving unemployment insurance benefits. 6.2 percent. How can it be so low?
Now I understand, after digging around, that each week I am e-mailed the initial unemployment insurance claims by the US Department of Labour.
The department said initial claims for state unemployment insurance benefits rose 35,000 to a seasonally adjusted 626,000 in the week ended January 31, the highest since the week ending October 30, 1982. The prior week's number was revised up to 591,000 from 588,000.
Analysts polled by Reuters had forecast 585,000 new claims.
The number of people staying on the benefits roll after drawing an initial week of aid surged by 20,000 to a record 4.788 million in the week ended January 24, the latest week for which the data is available, from 4.768 million the previous week.
That makes far more sense.
I love puzzles. During the holidays I always try my hand at the Prize Cryptic in the DomPost. But I never complete one. This year I persisted in my attempts and finally, yesterday, got one out. The solution is dispatched and maybe I will win a pen. Although I have won a number of pens over the years for letters and I don't need them. Funnily, I emailed the answers in. What I do need is a new keyboard as my present one, although not very old, is missing letters from over-use. The E,R,T,O and A have almost entirely disappeared.
Reader contributions invited for the long weekend
51 minutes ago