Why the jobless figure misses so many Americans

Jim Clifton, chairman and CEO of Gallup, the nation’s most respected polling firm, made a rather remarkable appearance Wednesday on CNBC. It came the day after Gallup’s website featured an opinion piece by Mr. Clifton, headlined, “The Big Lie: 5.6 Percent Unemployment.” “Here’s something,” wrote Mr. Clifton, ”that many Americans – including some of the smartest and most educated among us – don’t know: The official unemployment rate, as reported by the U.S. Department of Labor, is extremely misleading.” A day later, Gallup’s CEO walked back that assertion – or so it appeared.

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