Oops -- Cramer's October 12 Unemployment Prediction: 'We Are Not Going to Reach 10 Percent'
Drinking the Kool-Aid on MSNBC wasn't enough, even for CNBC's Jim Cramer, to escape the reality that Obamanomics isn't working.
Back on October 12, Cramer, to his credit, knew there were some problems with the $787-billion stimulus passed earlier this year. However, he felt it was necessary to pledge his admiration for President Barack Obama, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke. But, Matthews asked Cramer if there would be something tangible to back up that praise.
"OK - let me ask you the question," Matthews said on MSNBC's Oct. 12 "Hardball." "Let's talk about how we keep score in electoral politics, that's how we keep score. Between now and next summer, when people begin to decide how they're going to vote in next year's election, will the employment rate be coming down by then?"
At the time, the most recent unemployment figures showed a jobless rate of 9.8 percent. Cramer said the current level of 9.8 percent was the peak.
"Unequivocally," Cramer replied. "I think that we have seen the peak or are at the peak, and that next year will produce a lot of jobs. I'm very excited about that."
Matthews gave Cramer another opportunity to backtrack on his claim.
"We're looking at that peak," Matthews said. We just showed it up there on that card, 9.8 percent. Do you think it's going double, and then come back down, or go down from where it's at now?"
Nope. Cramer stuck to his guns - 9.8 percent was the top unemployment we would see (emphasis added).
"I think we are at the peak or within a point one [.1]," Cramer said. "We are not going to reach 10 percent. I have my neck on the line on that. But I think, Chris, that jobs are going to be created next year. But we really need help from Washington."
Unfortunately, Cramer was wrong. Department of Labor statistics indicated last week that the jobless rate exceeded 10 percent to 10.2 percent - the highest unemployment rate in the United States since 1983. Some economists, including Mark Zandi of Economy.com, think it could go higher, to a level of at least 11 percent.