09/25/2018

Labor Department’s seasonal job rejiggering doesn’t compute

The employment report for August was good — not great — but there were some strange numbers that President Trump should have someone keep an eye on.

The puzzling figures have to do with seasonal adjustments — those yawn-inducing details that go into every government economic report.

Bottom line: The Labor Department made major changes to those adjustments from last year, and those changes cut the number of jobs created in August by 95,000 — thus producing the 201,000 new August positions that were announced last Friday.

Those extra jobs, of course, would change a lot of things — including the rhetoric going into the November congressional elections and the Federal Reserve’s interest rate decisions.

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