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Real Unemployment -- Department of Labor (U-6)

Real Unemployment -- Department of Labor (U-6)

Date(s)% BLS Unemployment

Widely reported unemployment metrics in the U.S. do not accurately represent the reality of joblessness in America.

For example, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) does not count a person who desires work as unemployed if he or she is not working and has stopped looking for work over the past four weeks. Similarly, the BLS does not count someone as unemployed if he or she is, for instance, an out-of-work engineer, construction worker or retail manager who performs a minimum of one hour of work a week and receives at least $20 in compensation.

To measure unemployment, Gallup recommends using what we call the "Real Unemployment" metric from the BLS -- which combines those who are unemployed, underemployed and marginally attached to the workforce.

Here is one of Gallup's most important discoveries since its founding in 1935: What the whole world wants is a good job.

Gallup defines a "good job" as working 30 or more hours per week for an employer that provides a regular paycheck. Good jobs are essential to a thriving economy, a growing middle class, a booming entrepreneurial sector and, most importantly, human development. Creating as many good jobs as possible should be the No. 1 priority for business and government leaders everywhere.

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