How Miserable Are Americans?

Matt O’Brien: “The economy is supposedly the least miserable it’s been in almost 60 years, but don’t try actually telling anyone that.”

“That’s because the so-called misery index, which adds up the inflation and unemployment rates, doesn’t really tell us that much about the state of the economy right now. There are three problems with it. The first is that it says lower inflation is always better inflation, when that isn’t necessarily the case. The second is that, even seven years after the crisis, the unemployment rate still isn’t doing a great job capturing all the people in the labor market who actually want jobs or better jobs. And the third is that you shouldn’t put equal weight on inflation and unemployment when the second one is much worse. Add it all up, and you get a metric that paints a much sunnier picture of the economy than real life.”

Source: BLS

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