The Labor Department said Friday that the unemployment rate stayed flat at 5 percent in November. But does that tell the whole story?
Economists look beyond the "main" unemployment number to other indicators included in the report that can give a more textured view of the employment situation. On jobs day, the Bureau of Labor Statistics puts out a slew of figures, each of which provide their own view of the economy.
One of those figures is the U-6 rate. Many economists prefer the U-6 rather than the main unemployment number (also known as the U-3) because it captures people who work part time but would like to be working full time. The BLS defines U-6 as "total unemployed, plus all persons marginally attached to the labor force, plus total employed part time for economic reasons, as a percent of the civilian labor force," plus all marginally attached workers.