Labor Department announces drop in unemployment rate, but many stopped looking for work.

Unemployment Rate Drops to Five-Year Low, But People Giving Up Job Hunt Pads Numbers

Unemployment Rate Drops to Five-Year Low, But People Giving Up Job Hunt Pads Numbers

The Slatest
Your News Companion
Jan. 28 2014 9:14 PM

Unemployment Rate Drops to Five-Year Low, But People Giving Up Job Hunt Pads Numbers

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Unemployment rate drops, but many people stopped looking.

Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images

December was a good month when it came to jobs numbers, as the Labor Department announced on Tuesday that the unemployment rates fell in 39 states last month. That brought the national unemployment rate down to 6.7 percent, the lowest it's been in more than five years, the Associated Press reports. And the Washington Post points out that the new round of numbers showed that 29 states tallied their lowest unemployment rates since the recession. But, despite the optimistic employment numbers, the AP points out all is not rosy. “Nationwide, employers added just 74,000 jobs last month, the fewest in three years and much lower than the average of 214,000 in the previous four months,” the AP reports. In the same month, job growth slowed down to the lowest level in three years and unemployment dropped to a five-year low, what gives? The optimistic indicators are also a sign of a dejected workforce because the government only counts you as unemployed if you actually want a job, or more precisely, are actively looking for one. And therein lies the rub, according to the AP, as “the decline occurred mostly because more people stopped looking for work.”