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Fed Says Recovery Not Helping Unemployment Picture

A Federal Reserve survey released yesterday reveals that although the economy is growing, and the recovery is extending its reach geographically, 27 million people are still either unemployed, forced into part-time jobs, or so discouraged that they've stopped looking for work. The Fed acknowledged that economic conditions have improved modestly, but it also said the job market in most of the Fed's 12 regions remained "soft" as 2010 began.
In a worse-than-expected report last week, the government said companies chopped 85,000 jobs in December. The unemployment rate held steady at 10 percent - but only because more than a half-million people gave up their job searches and left the work force. According to analysts, if they hadn't dropped out, the unemployment rate would have jumped to 10.4 percent.

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