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Long-term unemployment worsens

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(Read caption) This chart shows the number of people in the US unemployed for 27 weeks or more. Rates spiked in 2009, and this is considered by economists to be the worst period of long-term unemployment since the Great Depression.

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Today's employment situation report showed that conditions for the long term unemployed worsened notably in September and remained epically distressed by historic standards.

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Workers unemployed 27 weeks or more increased to 6.242 million or 44.6% of all unemployed workers while the median number of weeks unemployed increased to 22.2 weeks and the average stay on unemployment increased to 40.5 weeks, a new high for the series.

Looking at the charts below (click for super interactive versions) you can see that today’s sorry situation far exceeds even the conditions seen during the double-dip recessionary period of the early 1980s, long considered by economists to be the worst period of unemployment since the Great Depression.