Unemployment numbers: Too good to be true?

Several readers responded with incredulity to the data in the article titled, “Unemployment rate declines to 7.8%.”

They are not alone.

Business guru Jack Welch was one of the first to cry foul at the rate. He tweeted: “Unbelievable job numbers. Those Chicago guys will do anything." The Bureau of Labor Statistics bristles at the suggestion that the data was politically motivated, or that it was altered to cast the incumbent president’s policies in the finest light possible. Click here for the article. 

Here are some of the comments about the employment situation report from HCN readers: 

“I am not trusting this data. Why? Because the government tracks and may easily manipulate the information to serve their political goals.” 
— Ed Sims 

“Complete political manipulation. How is it that once unemployment has run out, those people are not counted anymore, even though they are still not working? If I were Romney (at the next debate), I would drill Obama until he admits the data is wrong.”
— Name withheld

“Certainly coincidence four weeks [before] a general election. Need to see how many stopped looking for work and how the definition of 'employment to population' allows a 40-basis point change after being flat year to date. All too suspicious and vague from the department of labor.”
— Mike Howser 

"The numbers are fudged to make Obama look better. Way too big of a jump to be credible."
— Paul Gilpin