... From January to June, the monthly payroll figures came in like this: 284,000, 259,000, 154,000, 68,000, 77,000, 80,000. That’s a pretty drastic fall-off. Some of it reflects the fact that G.D.P. growth has slowed down and businesses have put hiring decisions on hold. But some of it is almost certainly a statistical aberration caused by the abnormally warm winter, which led to fewer seasonal layoffs than normal during the cold months and fewer seasonal hires during the spring. If that is the case, the official job figures should pick up a bit in the coming months regardless of what happens to the rest of the economy.
The statisticians at the Labor Department make an adjustment for seasonal hiring and firing, which involves bumping up the raw payroll figures in the winter and knocking them down a bit in the spring. Normally, such a procedure is perfectly justified. This year, though, it appears to have overstated job growth during the winter and understated it during the spring. Recently, the official payroll figures have been quite a bit lower than the jobs numbers from other sources, such as the Labor Department’s own household survey and estimates provided by the research firm ADP. Just yesterday, ADP said that private sector employment expanded by 176,000 in June, which was more than double today’s payroll figure.
In short, it appears that things were never as good as they seemed a few months ago, and they aren’t quite as bad they appear today. With summer here, the seasonal-adjustment factor should drop out of the payroll figures beginning with this month’s figures, which will be released in the first week of August. ...John Cassidy, New Yorker
You think that's complicated and maybe a bunch of lies? Well, try 1) understanding, and then 2) believing in the "God particle."
I'd love to know how our far-out evangelicals are going to deal with the reality of the Higgs boson, aka the "god particle."