May 8th, 2009
08:52 AM ET
9 years ago

Job losses ease, but unemployment rate at 25-year high

NEW YORK ( – The unemployment rate hit a 25-year high in April, but there were signs of hope as the monthly job loss total fell to the lowest level in six months.

The Labor Department reported that employers cut 539,000 jobs from payrolls in the month. That's an improvement from the revised reading of 699,000 that were lost in March, and the best reading since October, when the economy shed 380,000 jobs.

Still, that brings job losses since the start of 2008 to 5.7 million.

The unemployment rate, based on a separate survey rose to 8.9% from 8.5% in March, the worst reading since September 1983. Economists surveyed by had forecast the rate would rise to 8.9%.

Economists had forecast a loss of 600,000 in April, but there had been signs in recent days that the job losses might not be as bad as they expected. A reading on private sector employment by payroll services firm ADP showed a big drop in job losses in April, and there has been a steady decline in recent weeks in people filing for first-time unemployment benefits.

More on

Listen: CNN Senior White House Correspondent Ed Henry on the economy.

To subscribe to this podcast go to

Filed under: Economy
soundoff (29 Responses)
  1. Leslie

    Of course job losses ease, big layoffs from big corporations happened the last 90 days and remaining businesses are continue with the layoff of people still has a job.

    It's true claim for unemployment benefit is down, due to the fact, the unemployed can't draw any unemployment benefits anymore.

    I am seeing businesses in my city closing their doors,

    HOPE AND CHANGE! FANTASTIC CHANGE OF NOBAMA AND DEMOCRAPS. Lines in food banks are getting longer every day.

    May 8, 2009 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  2. Rick

    That's a nice spin that Obama is putting on this news but this is what we are left with after spending TRILLIONS of dollars.

    May 8, 2009 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  3. jim carroll

    We could have full employment at all times. The father of capitalism, Adam Smith, tried to point out to the “intelligentsia” of his day that real wealth did not consist of the gold and silver that they had in their treasury; but real wealth consisted of goods and services that people produced and exchanged.

    The “intelligentsia” of American still doesn’t get it. If they did, the question they would be asking: are there people and natural resources available to produce goods and services. They would know that Article 1, Section 8, of the Constitution gives the Federal Government power to create the money necessary to exchange the goods and services that people’s hands and minds produce. America doesn’t need to borrow money from China or anyone else to have a sufficient
    money supply to exchange all the goods and services produced.

    Recession is a product of ignorance. The Federal Reserve as presently constructed is inadequate in keeping a balanced money supply at all times. Present circumstances and past circumstances ought to be proof enough of the Federal Reserve inadequacies. You might think that the Federal Reserve Chairman, Ben Bernanke, with all of his college degrees would be intelligent enough to know by now that
    tinkering with interest rates has never worked and never will work to keep an adequate money supply; but since all the colleges and universities teach the same unworkable economic ideas, it is easy to see why. The Philosophy of Mixturism and Nature’s Basic Law of Economics of has the right ideas that would keep a balanced money supply and full employment at all times. Roller Coaster Economics would be gone forever.

    May 8, 2009 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  4. Some Guy

    If trickle down economics does not work what does?

    I hear libs yelling that it does not work, but they never come back with what does work.

    If you give money to the less wealthy (under 40K) do they invest it? Do they open businesses that create jobs? The only people who invest and create jobs are people with high incomes not some guy working at a factory maming 40K a year. So please explain how Obamanomics works?

    I must be missing something, please someone give me a logical answer as to why taxing the wealthy so hard is good for this country when they are the job creators and ivestors. If you can explain to me why you believe otherwise I would love to here your reply.

    May 8, 2009 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
1 2