Thursday, December 6, 2012

The Layoff Lottery

Click to enlarge.

All things being equal, the odds of being laid off in a given week are currently 360 to 1. Employees haven't been this "safe" since the dotcom bubble and the housing bubble. Hurray.

Every nonfarm payroll worker gets a chance to play this game each and every week. Households with two workers get to play twice. It's just like playing Powerball. The odds are so much better though!

At 360 to 1 odds per week, the chance that a single worker can go 5 years without a layoff is 49%.

(359/360)^(52*5) = 49%

The chance that both workers in a two-earner household can go 5 years without a layoff falls to a much lower 24%.

(359/360)^(52*5*2) = 24%

That poses a serious problem for households which require two incomes to make the mortgage payments. Who thinks banks factored this math in when making the mortgage loans? I sure don't. Sigh.

And lastly, I strongly believe that we will return to the blue median trend line at some point in the not too distant future (and quite possibly well below it). Factor in that I've been a permabear since 2004. Your opinion may vary.

Disclosure: I've seen the unemployment lines twice in my life, which is pretty much par for the course. Look how many times I dodged the bullets though.

See Also:
Sarcasm Disclaimer

Source Data:
St. Louis Fed: Custom Chart


Rob Dawg said...

Retail and finance employment bubble.

Stagflationary Mark said...

how to make a bubble wrap dress

Rob Dawg said...

What's with the damn leotard? Takes all the fun out of it.

Serious-lousy, What we are seeing in employment is mountaintop slicing. The best compensated jobs are being automated-outsourced-redefined-subdivided etc. to further bifurcate the working classes back into serfs and lords.

Stagflationary Mark said...

Rob Dawg,

What's with the damn leotard? Takes all the fun out of it.

This is why you will always have many more page hits than me. ;)

As for your employment comment, preaching to the choir. Sigh.