Gallup Finds Recent Job Boost Due To "Temp And Part-Time" Hiring; Underemployment Greater Than Prior Year

Tyler Durden's picture

While the BLS unemployment number, fudged strategically to lower the denominator, or the total labor force, may have come well better than expected (as somehow miraculously ever more people find the shadow economy a more hospitable place where to make their money and drop off the BLS roll forever) we once again go to that trusty fallback, the monthly Gallup poll of underemployment. What we find here is rather different from what the BLS, and the administration would like us to believe, namely that "underemployment, a measure that combines the percentage of workers who are unemployed with the percentage working part time but wanting full-time work, is 18.1% in November, as measured by Gallup without seasonal adjustment. That is up from 17.8% a month ago and 17.2% a year ago." Said simply, "many employers appear to have chosen to hire part-time rather than full-time employees for this holiday season." Naturally, this should come as no surprise: it was first discussed here in May, when we said: "As the attached chart shows, since the start of the depression, America has lost 9.1 million full time jobs, offsetting this by a gain of 2.3 million part time jobs. No need to outsource to Asia any more: America now outsources jobs to temp agencies. And so the transition of America into a part-time worker society, first discussed in December of 2010 continues." (the attached chart can be seen here). As for the Gallup chart which comes from the real economy, not from some seasonally fudged, birth/death adjusted grotesque model deep in the bowels of 2 Massachusetts Ave NE Washington, here it is.

So why is this rise in underemployment a bad thing? For all the wrong reasons:

Increasing Underemployment May Imply Future Layoffs


Gallup's underemployment data suggest that today's employers are increasingly relying on part-time employees who would prefer to work full time. A year-over-year comparison shows that the 0.3-percentage-point drop in the unemployment rate is more than offset by the increase of 1.2 points in the percentage of those who work part time but want full-time work. The unemployment rate appears to have improved over the past year largely because Americans are taking part-time work when they can't get full-time jobs.


This worsening of the underemployment situation is worrisome not just because more Americans are not able to get the full-time jobs they want, but because of what it may imply about employer attitudes. Economic uncertainty may have many employers hiring part-time instead of full-time workers, and/or temporary workers instead of permanent ones. In turn, this could mean that many of those who had part-time or temporary work in November could see those jobs disappear early next year.

In other words, contrary to simplistic headline charts, the number one data series that pundits should be focusing on, is the subset of persons "who currently want a job." Indicatively, as we showed on Friday, this just hit an all time high... even according to the BLS:

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
lotsoffun's picture

nice job, bennie, timmie and bammie.  like anybody here didn't already know that.  months ago.  just need confirmation.

the new, new ecb plan - and rate cuts - they still have a bunch left to go.  stocks to the moon until next spring at earliest.

trav7777's picture

lower rates will create new jobs.  But jobs are pointless unless they have maximum diversity...that is our greatest strength and it enabled us to become a world power.

AldousHuxley's picture

that's what war is for. to enroll the unemployeed to kill some folks before getting killed themselves. population control coming to neighborhood near you.


Why don't government create Bureau of Bankster Investigations and hire college educated kids to investigate and find proof of wrongdoing of banksters and other elites to rid of corruption in the system.

VyseLegendaire's picture

"Why don't government create Bureau of Bankster Investigations and hire college educated kids to investigate and find proof of wrongdoing of banksters and other elites to rid of corruption in the system."


Oh you

Rainman's picture

Well, Japan's underemployment is 33%, so we have upside potential galore

Carlyle Groupie's picture

Even thought Japan has become irrelevant in the face of China. One must respect the shear volume of US Patents that they own.

If I were the top muckity muck in Japan I'd turn that fucker into a huge think tank.

I've worked on a few uC firmware projects with Japanese engineers and I can say without exaggeration that they were very knowledgeable. Very much so!

Specialize bitchez!

Corn1945's picture

There is an explosion of temp agencies. These things are everywhere now. 

blu's picture

You'll know we're way down the rabbit hole when ZH replaces RanSquawk in the sidebar with a LinkedIn feed.

Nobody special's picture

Dude, that's not a bad idea.  How 'bout a Tweet This function to match?  Digg it, Reddit, StumbleUpon... my how the possibilities shine.

Unfortunately, I doubt even the powerful ZeroHedge could get away with such networking tools for long.  The traffic and attention drawn to this site would be astounding.  TPTB would not sit idle while the world was educated in such a rapid fashion.

sgt_doom's picture

Corn1945, your comments should be taken as relative to the context:  back in 2003, the largest temp agency in America, Manpower, closed 1,000 offices throughout the country, and opened up 1,000 offices in China.

Everything is relative, my dear chum.....

AldousHuxley's picture

kids these days need 5 yrs of experience + MBA to get hired by temp agencies...namely, McKinsey, Bain, Boston Consulting Group.


becuase profitability is greatest when labor is disposable.

Iliketurtles's picture

I have full confidence in Obama, I just increased my long positions on groupon and blackberry. Unemployment went down that is all I need to know.

Everybodys All American's picture

Blackberry? Huh.  Long Blackberry are ya? Got a symbol on that one my little shady trade. Under employment went up another one.

A Nanny Moose's picture

I think it is a reference to The O'Bamabot's much ballyhooed use of the latter.

blu's picture


Why, it's almost as if someone deliberately lied to us.

Soda Popinski's picture

President Barry S. will encourage the BLS to have numbers that show 6% unemployment by next fall.

lizzy36's picture

Outsourcing is everywhere.

Learn the word "teleradiology". Whereby some for profit hospitals in the US are sending your x-rays via the internet to a radiologist in India (average salary $35k a year) to be read. 

Mind you the only way Yanks will finally wake up to the plague of "corporatism" is when eating is finally outsourced to India or China.

JustObserving's picture

Already happened - in case you missed it, here it is again:


US hunger rate triple that in China By Patrick Martin
17 October 2011

American workers are now three times more likely than Chinese workers to lack the means of feeding their families, according to a startling new report from the Gallup organization. The polling group found that 19 percent of Americans worried about being able to feed themselves or their families, compared to only 6 percent of Chinese.

The Gallup finding showed a near reversal in the proportions of American and Chinese workers at risk of hunger over the past three years, an indication of the shattering impact of the economic slump brought on by the 2008 Wall Street financial crash. In 2008, 16 percent of Chinese said they at times lacked the money to put food on the table, compared to 9 percent of Americans.


lawton2's picture

Total BS the poor in the US goes to food banks mostly for free food and trades food stamps for cash/drugs etc...

AldousHuxley's picture

why do you need a human to do a machine's job?


AI security software can replace most of the radiologists in the world.


In fact, if you ever go get your eyes checked, the doctor will manually test your vision, but there already is a machine that can determine your vision Rx.


Medicine is one of world's oldest cartels. They are experts in lobbying.


More money should go into medical research not human mechanics.

nmewn's picture


Caviar Emptor's picture

Sen. Jon Kyl announced Monday what it will really take to extend a payroll tax holiday for the middle class: an extension of tax breaks for the wealthy.

The Arizona Republican, taking to the Senate floor after Democrats proposed a 1.9 percent surtax on income above $1 million to pay for the payroll tax break, argued that the tax cut didn't work. But, he said, he'd still support its extension if the wealthy keep their breaks, too.

blu's picture

Well at least the guy had guts, coming out like that.

And we'll be seeing a lot more of his guts after the rioting mob is finished with him.

nmewn's picture

FICA tax holiday I assume.

Can someone tell me exactly why they can't find any spending to cut in order to make the FICA tax cut permanent seeing as how twenty year olds paying in today will never see a dime of it back?

Current government spending levels are the only sacred cow in DC? I have not forgot the fucking pork barrel bullshit from just two-three years ago.

400 billion in debt in one whack...poof! 

trav7777's picture

EXACTLY...why the fuck is their answer ALWAYS MORE FUCKING TAXES?

What, we can't LIVE anymore on a fucking $2T budget?  END THE FUCKING WARS

nmewn's picture

It never ceases to amaze me trav.

There is shit to cut everywhere...but they want the size of the government pie to remain the same. Thats extracted from the economy...from earnings...wages.

There was actually some boneheaded ass wipe congressman (you know which flavor) on the other day saying government spending can't be cut at this "critical time" because it will decrease employment even further.

I could just fucking scream.

Shizzmoney's picture

The temp agencies who are doing well are the chop shops, too.  The ones who nit on benefits and pay as the monetary belt gets tighter..

Troll Magnet's picture

seasonal numbers.  retailers staffed up to dump their shit just in time for christmas.  anyone surprised?

lotsoffun's picture

i was looking at one of the online dutch newspapers late last week.  i guess the translation was - 'obviously no more need for hope, that's taken care of.  if you want to know what changed - just fill in - 'change is ...'.  and for this years' campaign, they expect bammie will be campaigning on  'love is ...'.  starting to look a little orwellian.  i think they were being sarcastic.




Whoa Dammit's picture

"Get a job", as spouted by the MSM, when there are no jobs is the modern day version of what "Let them eat cake" was when there was no food.

batterycharged's picture

The beauty to the economy pumpers of 120,000 part-time, temp jobs is that in 1 month they won't appear on the weekly unemployment claims number....because they won't qualify for unemployment.

So 120,000 jobs in the MSM, here today....quietly gone tomorrow.

yogibear's picture

Who cares? The lies and mis-information helped to juice the markets. Isn't that what it's all about? Traders have a hard time if there aren't big swings in the market.  How about much more ranges? Up 1,000 points, down 1,000?  It's a beautiful thing for traders and the bots (HFTs). More massive swings please.

Forgiven's picture

I just think they like to see their names in lights.

yogibear's picture

Greenspan said overseas outsourcing of jobs was good. The Federal Reserve's idea is to financialize everything. Don't do any actual work. Just pay someone $10/day in China and collect the profits from the huge margin of profit in the cost of manufacturing vs the sale price.

blu's picture

Even simpler, leave monetary policy decisions to a bunch of chimps. Their track record throwing random shit at a target will be every bit as good as what is issuing from the halls of elite genius now working on the problem.

And our expectations will be suitably adjusted as a result.

AldousHuxley's picture

doesn't that tell you something about da FED?


PhD perfect SAT brains are not idiots to get worse results than what gives?


It is intentional design....controlled

Caviar Emptor's picture

In the future, you'll be hired for 15 minutes - Andy Warhol

Kaiser Sousa's picture

this is bullish right??

Dow 36,000...

ritchez bitchez!!!

christ almighty....pass me my Silver....

youngman's picture

and CNBC had an Economists on that said we should raise the minimum

And Cramer was spewing about the cash under the table market as the big growth industry...

When I was a kid they were called Hobo´s..they would travel the rails...from town to town..and try to find day jobs...

Stevious's picture

I'm an unemployed RN, an Occupational Nursing Specialist.  I lost my job when my company closed. 

Since then I've found three ideal jobs--my qualifications and certifications match exactly.

But there's one problem.

Each job in 2007 was a full-time benefited position.

Today each of these jobs are part-time, and too far to commute.

Since I can't sell my house (nobody to sell to) I could afford to take one of these distant jobs by renting an apartment--but not if it's only part-time.

And so I stay unemployed.

In five years a full-time job with decent benefits will become a "wives tale".

batterycharged's picture

There was an employer railing on the unemployed in a local paper because he said no one qualified was applying to his $8/hr job.

He said it was a very easy job and wondered "where were all the desperate unemployed people?".

Problem was, his location was 80 miles outside of most populated areas in the city. At $8/hr, after tax, you're working your first 2 hours for gas, not to mention the miles put on your car.

non_anon's picture

I'm still looking for those greenshoots joey was bragging about a few years back

bnbdnb's picture

Structural. Move along.

UGrev's picture

This article could be started with the current title, supported by the chart only, and ended with the following phrase: "NO FUCKING SHIT!!!..REALLY?"