Jobs Picture, by Heidi Shierholz, 06-05-09: "The unemployment rate increased from 8.9% to 9.4% in May, as the Household Survey showed that over three-quarters of a million workers were added to the jobless rolls, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. May marked the 17th straight month of job loss; the current recession is now officially the longest economic downturn since the Great Depression. The Establishment Survey showed that the U.S. economy lost 345,000 jobs in May, compared to an average monthly loss of 643,000 jobs in the previous half-year. Many will see the declining pace of job-loss in this month’s report as good news. However, last month’s numbers should be put into a larger context: before the current recession, the 0.3% decline in total employment in May would have been the second largest monthly decline in a quarter century. It is only in the midst of a historically steep recession that losing 345,000 jobs in a single month is actually taken as a good sign...The Economic Policy Institute JOBS PICTURE is published each month upon release of the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Employment Situation report."