The Economy: Insistent Signals

The warning signals of recession flashed more insistently than ever across the U.S. economy last week.

Unemployment rose to its highest level in 4½ years. The February jobless rate was 4.2%, up from 3.9% in January. In human terms, the figures mean that 3,800,000 people were out of work last month, compared with only 3,400,000 a month earlier. The configuration of the increase looks even more disturbing than the totals. Labor Department officials said that about three-fifths of the unemployment rise during January and February involves workers who have lost their jobs, rather...

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