586PART NINETHE REAL ECONOMY IN THE LONG RUNprogram that financially assists the unemployed or because they are actuallyworking and being paid “under the table.” It may be more realistic to view theseindividuals as out of the labor force or, in some cases, employed. On the otherhand, some of those who report being out of the labor force may, in fact, want towork. These individuals may have tried to find a job but have given up after anunsuccessful search. Such individuals, called discouraged workers,do not showup in unemployment statistics, even though they are truly workers without jobs.According to most estimates, adding discouraged workers would increase themeasured unemployment rate by about one-half of one percentage point.There is no easy way to fix the unemployment rate as reported by the BLS tomake it a more reliable indicator of conditions in the labor market. In the end, it isbest to view the reported unemployment rate as a useful but imperfect measure ofjoblessness.
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