Saturday, October 27, 2012

Fuzzy Math

A couple of periods ago there was a huge drop in the number of unemployement applications, one which dropped the unemploymnet number from 8.0% down to 7.8% but which turned out to be a reporting error. Seems that California didn't realize it was the end of the calendar quarter, or it calculates calendar quarters differently than the rest of the nation, or it just counts slowly... Anyway, it failed to report some 30,000 unemployment applications. Of course it was California's fault; everything is.

At any rate, California eventually reported those applications and the "anomalous number" (otherwise known as the "bullshit" number) was corrected, but a funny thing happened. The unemployment figure which was dropped by that "anomaly" was not corrected back upward along with the number of unemployed people, it remained at 7.8% instead.

So, if you have a truck with 100 apples and 40 of them fall out you have 60% of your apples remaining. If you put 20 apples back into your truck you still have only 60% of the original number of apples. Interesting math.

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