Wishful Thinking? AP Headline Overstates Feb. Job Adds by 50,000

Gosh, how did that happen?

At the Associated Press as of 7:30 p.m., its Top Business stories (saved here for future reference) top headline read: "Strong 3 months of hiring as US adds 277,000 jobs." The headline at the underlying article (saved here) reads the same. Related pics are after the jump.


Here they are:

APtopsideOn277Kjobs030912 APwrongOn277Kjobs030912

One has to wonder if the Administration's Press is going to get a call or email from the White House wondering why the wire service used a marquee advertising what are typically part-time jobs at a drive-in theatre as its picture glorifying today's news. (It's actually inadvertently appropriate, given the virtually unreported trend during the past two years, which has only recently begun to reverse, of hiring of part-timers vs. full-timers.)

There's really no wriggling out of this one for the AP's headline writers.

Upward revisions to seasonally adjusted figures for December and January added 61,000 to the number of Americans reported as having jobs per the Establishment Survey. Combined with February's additions of 227,000 reported today, that leads to a total of 288,000, not 277,000. Typo?

Perhaps AP was trying to tell us something about the average number of jobs added during the past three months. If so, that doesn't work either. The past three months' additions have totaled 734,000, or an average of 245,000.

The number "277,000" does not appear anywhere in Christopher Rugaber's report. What an "odd" coincidence that the number just so happens to be 50,000 too high.

This is just AP: Absolutely Pathetic.

Cross-posted at BizzyBlog.com.

Tom Blumer
Tom Blumer
Tom Blumer is a contributing editor for NewsBusters.