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2.7%  Q1 GDP    4.57%  avg. 30-year mortgage     9.5%  Unemployment

Important monthly unemployment report due out Friday

On Friday morning at 8:30, the Labor Department will reveal the official January unemployment rate.

Forecasters expect the rate to come in at 10.1 percent, up just a tick from the December rate of 10 percent, which was unchanged from the November rate of 10 percent. Unemployment hit its current peak of 10.1 percent in November.

Of course, that's only the official rate. If you include all the people who should be working full time but are not -- those who are forced to work part time and those who've given up looking for work -- then the rate will likely come in at a much grimmer 17.2 percent or so.

Unemployment has become the political issue for the White House and Congress, which is weighing what it calls a jobs bill but which opponents criticize as a second, albeit smaller, stimulus. If the jobless rate can't be pulled down from 10 percent, then a number of members of Congress may find themselves out of work come the midterm elections in November.

I'll be unpacking the monthly unemployment report all day tomorrow as I do each time it comes out. Be sure to check back to get a truer picture of unemployment in America.

Follow me on Twitter at @theticker

By Frank Ahrens  |  February 4, 2010; 6:01 PM ET
Categories:  The Ticker  | Tags: Obama, joblessness, mid-term elections, unemployment  
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