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After an 18-day delay caused by the partial government shutdown, the Bureau of Labor Statistics Tuesday issued its report that the economy added a seasonally adjusted 148,000 new full-time and part-time jobs in September. The private sector added 126,000 and governments at all levels added 22,000 workers. The official unemployment rate, calculated by a separate survey, fell to 7.2 percent. The number of officially unemployed Americans is 11.3 million, but that count leaves out millions of discouraged workers and workers who want full-time jobs but can only find part-time work.

The consensus of experts queried in advance had put the expected gain in jobs at 180,000 for September. A report by Automated Data Processing released Oct. 2 estimated 166,000 private-sector jobs had been created in September. Unlike the BLS, ADP does not count public-sector jobs and it is notable for not meshing closely with the government report. Said Todd Schoenberger, managing partner at LandColt Capital.

"Today's blistering jobs report has quickly reminded America that our economic problems are getting worse, despite talking point reassurances from Federal Reserve officials."
How valuable Tuesday's belated BLS report will be to Federal Reserve and the myriad businesses that depend on its statistics for their decision-making is unknown.

The next monthly report is scheduled to appear on Nov. 8. Under normal circumstances, the BLS stops gathering information for its report around the 12th of the month being evaluated—Oct. 12 for the October jobs report, for example. But because of the shutdown, gathering information was delayed. This could skew the results of the October report as BLS analysts scramble to meet their next deadline.

The Economic Policy Institute points out a big hole in the BLS calculations:

In today’s labor market, the unemployment rate drastically understates the weakness of job opportunities. This is due to the existence of a large pool of “missing workers”—potential workers who, because of weak job opportunities, are neither employed nor actively seeking a job. In other words, these are people who would be either working or looking for work if job opportunities were significantly stronger. Because jobless workers are only counted as unemployed if they are actively seeking work, these “missing workers” are not reflected in the unemployment rate.
By EPI's gauge, there were in August, 4.97 million "missing workers." If they were seeking work, the unemployment rate for that month would have been 10.1 percent, not the actually reported 7.3 percent.

Internally, the BLS calls the official unemployment rate U3. This is the so-called headline number. The bureau also calculates a more complete measure called U6 that rarely makes the headlines. U6 covers a portion of those workers EPI notes have given up looking for a job but still want one. It also includes Americans who work part-time even though they want full-time jobs. The jargon calls these "part time for economic reasons." They constitute the so-called underemployed. In September, U6 fell to 13.6 percent. In August, U6 had fallen 0.3 to 13.7 percent.

For more details about today's jobs report and some related charts, please continue reading below the fold.

The seasonally adjusted 169,000 job gain the BLS reported for August was revised to 193,000. The July figures were revised from 104,000 to 89,000.

The number of long-term unemployed, those out of work for 27 weeks or more, was 4.1 million, accounting for 36.9 percent of the unemployed.

At the current average monthly gain in jobs—143,300 for the past three months—it would take until June 2022 to return to pre-recession employment levels while absorbing the people who enter the labor force each month. That's because not only must the jobs lost be replaced, but also jobs must be found for the increase in the working-age population that has occurred over the past six years, a figure that grows by about 90,000-100,000 each month.

The employment-population ratio remained at 58.6 percent in September. The labor force participation rate remained at 63.2 percent, the lowest level in 35 years. A portion of the fall in labor force participation—about one-third, according to the Economic Policy Institute, higher according to other analysts—is due to an aging population that has begun to retire. But a portion of the fall is also a consequence of discouraged workers giving up looking for jobs because they've had no luck for so long in finding one and a shift  to lower percentages of Americans aged 16-24 in the workforce than has previously been the case.

You can calculate for yourself how fast the economy would return to the pre-recessionary employment level by using this interactive gadget. And you can calculate the number of jobs needed each month just to keep up with growth in the working-age population with this gadget at the Atlanta Federal Reserve.
Here are the official (U3) seasonally adjusted unemployment rates in September for:

African Americans— 12.9 percent
Latinos— 9.0 percent
Asian Americans— 5.3 percent (not seasonally adjusted)
Whites— 6.3 percent
American IndiansNot counted
Women—6.2 percent

Among other news in the September job report:

Professional services: + 32,000
Transportation and warehousing : + 23,400
Leisure & hospitality:  -  13,000
Health care: + 13,700
Retail trade: + 20,800
Construction: +20,000
Manufacturing: + 2,000
Average manufacturing hours remained the same at 40.8 hours.
Average hourly earnings for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls rose 3 cents from August's revised figure to $24.09.

Here's what the job growth numbers have looked like in September for the previous 10 years.

September 2003: + 105,000        
September 2004: + 155,000
September 2005: +   65,000
September 2006: + 159,000
September 2007: +   77,000
September 2008:  - 459,000
September 2009:  - 233,000
September 2010:  -   43,000
September 2011: + 225,000
September 2012: + 138,000
September 2013: + 148,000

The BLS jobs report is the product of a pair of surveys, one of more than 410,000 business establishments called Current Employment Statistics, and one called the Current Population Survey, which questions 60,000 householders each month. The establishment survey determines how many new jobs were added. It is always calculated on a seasonally adjusted basis determined by a frequently tweaked formula.  The BLS report only provides a snapshot of what's happening at a single point in time.
It's important to understand that the jobs-created-last-month-numbers that it reports are not "real." Not because of a conspiracy, but because statisticians apply formulas to the raw data, estimate the number of jobs created by the "birth" and "death" of businesses, and use other filters to fine-tune the numbers. And, always good to remember, in the fine print, they tell us that the actual number of newly created jobs reported is actually plus or minus 100,000.

Originally posted to Daily Kos Labor on Tue Oct 22, 2013 at 06:03 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Well, after two years of monthly (6+ / 0-)

    job loss due to the Bush Recession, this month does mark three years in a row of monthly job gains. So while the number isn't nearly as big as we'd like, things are much better than they were.

    •  right on! (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      bobswern

      With job gains like this, if we wait it out, unemployment will be at zero because all the people who quit looking for work will have died of starvation and the fed can eliminate the easing program.  Progressive change you can believe in!

      It puts the lotion on its skin

      by Nada Lemming on Tue Oct 22, 2013 at 09:23:19 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The "Dept. of Disinformation" has commented... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Nada Lemming

      ...just a reminder, they are not discussing reality on planet Earth. Here's Earth-based data as noted in Meteor Blades' post, and from Jared Bernstein in the NY Times, from just a couple of hours ago...

      ...The Economic Policy Institute points out a big hole in the BLS calculations:
      In today’s labor market, the unemployment rate drastically understates the weakness of job opportunities. This is due to the existence of a large pool of “missing workers”—potential workers who, because of weak job opportunities, are neither employed nor actively seeking a job. In other words, these are people who would be either working or looking for work if job opportunities were significantly stronger. Because jobless workers are only counted as unemployed if they are actively seeking work, these “missing workers” are not reflected in the unemployment rate.

      By EPI's gauge, there were in August, 4.97 million "missing workers." If they were seeking work, the unemployment rate for that month would have been 10.1 percent, not the actually reported 7.3 percent.

      By EPI's gauge, there were in August, 4.97 million "missing workers." If they were seeking work, the unemployment rate for that month would have been 10.1 percent, not the actually reported 7.3 percent...
      And, here's more Earth-based data, from Jared Bernstein, from the past few hours, via the NY Times "Economix" Blog...
      A Discouraging Picture
      By JARED BERNSTEIN
      New York Times
      October 22, 2013, 11:08 am

      ...It’s just a very discouraging picture. Over the most recent quarter, payrolls were up an average of 143,000 per month, down from 182,000 in the second quarter, and 207,000 in the first quarter.

      Private payrolls expanded by only 129,000 a month on average last quarter, well down from the average monthly gain of 212,000 (itself just a moderate pace of employment growth) in the first quarter of the year...
      ...

      ...The pattern of deceleration seems to me a lot more consistent with same weak demand story that’s been plaguing this disappointing recovery for years.

      What’s that? We’re in a recovery? Yes, and have been so for four years. But you just don’t see enough of it in the job market. Unemployment is still highly elevated, and job growth is once again decelerating.

      Yes, financial institutions have been turning handsome profits — that growth has to be going somewhere (note that stocks opened higher Tuesday, based on the likely correct notion that the Fed would continue to put off the taper) — but paychecks are barely beating (low) inflation.

      When so much economic inequality is built into the structure of our economy, that’s exactly the result we should expect when the job market is weak...

      "I always thought if you worked hard enough and tried hard enough, things would work out. I was wrong." --Katharine Graham

      by bobswern on Tue Oct 22, 2013 at 10:28:46 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Republican response (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JML9999, ZedMont, tuma

    "CLEARLY FIXED!!!!  We shut the government down for two weeks and there were still job gains?  HOGWASH!!!  IMPEACH!!!!"

    •  This is what they want...and fervently pray for... (0+ / 0-)

      their only hope for 2016...but if their argument is the stale  cut taxes, deregulate I don't see them faring any better than Romney...

      "When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in a flag and carrying a cross." Sinclair Lewis, 1935 --Talk of foresight--

      by tuma on Tue Oct 22, 2013 at 07:53:14 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  October data will be terrible (4+ / 0-)

    due to the shutdown. I expect a significant job loss for October

  •  Unwelcome news, but not unexpected (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ZedMont, Meteor Blades, Eric Nelson

    The shutdown gave lots of advance warning for some potential employers.  October will be relative good news if is a positive number of any size.

    In due course, the GOP will trot out the "Where are the jobs, Mr. President?" canard and deny and/or ignore that the Shutdown they insisted upon had anything to do with it.

    Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle. --Martin Luther King Jr.

    by Egalitare on Tue Oct 22, 2013 at 06:17:58 AM PDT

  •  Here's a crazy idea: (8+ / 0-)

    Why don't we take a small portion of the GRILLIONS of dollars that we lavished on Wall Street to soothe their fee-fees after the crash of '08 and direct it into programs that would help address the under and unemployment epidemic in America. I know, cuckoo.

    Let's go back to E Pluribus Unum

    by hazzcon on Tue Oct 22, 2013 at 06:18:09 AM PDT

  •  waiting to hear this week if i can help the (9+ / 0-)

    October numbers by 1!

    "Don't Bet Against Us" - President Barack Obama

    by MRA NY on Tue Oct 22, 2013 at 06:20:17 AM PDT

  •  Thank you continued Republican sabotage (6+ / 0-)

    And austerity! After 5 years, how can anyone not recognize the triple whammy of intentional damage for political gain, sequester cuts, and shutdown/crisis tactics being responsible for the ongoing economic problems? Republican political terrorism has done as much or more damage to this country than the 'actual' terrorists we've been hiding under our beds from for over a decade.

    They called Einstein 'crazy', too..... until he started KICKING ASS!!!

    by Fordmandalay on Tue Oct 22, 2013 at 06:21:09 AM PDT

    •  Speaking of GOP sabotage: (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      oofer, Eric Nelson

      Considering the ACA website was launched during the GOP's shutdown (and it is the GOP's shutdown -- they planned it with their Heritage Foundation buddies such as Michael Needham back in January of this year, as a recent NYT article revealed) and the ongoing efforts by Republican governors and legislatures to sabotage the ACA, I'm amazed it's at all functional.

      What's lost in all of this is that there is a phone number you can call to do that horribly primitive method of registering by phone: 1-800-318-2596. Alternatively, you can get local help at LocalHelp.HealthCare.gov, which is especially important if you live in a state whose Republican governors and/or legislature did their worst to undermine the healthcare exchanges.

      Pass it on!  (I'd diary this but my web browser is being tetchy this morning.)

      Visit http://theuptake.org/ for Minnesota news as it happens.

      by Phoenix Woman on Tue Oct 22, 2013 at 06:27:21 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  "...how can anyone not recognize....?" (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MHB

      The same way they always do it.  They may not recognize political triple whammies, but they know everything there is to know about Kanye proposing to Kim-Kim.

      It's all about priorities, Dude.  If the Republicans would just...hey, man, cool tattoo!  

      Blue, blue, my world is blue... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h6cPXvTqasg

      by ZedMont on Tue Oct 22, 2013 at 07:12:10 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Linking to CNBC ? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SilverOz

    ...And quoting an analyst at a private firm for the downer?

    Obama 2012 http://whatthefuckhasobamadonesofar.com/

    by jiffypop on Tue Oct 22, 2013 at 06:30:02 AM PDT

    •  How about Jared Bernstein: (5+ / 0-)
      This chart [showing slowing job growth in the past three quarters] paints a very discouraging pattern.  We’re four years into a recovery that began in the second half of 2009, yet unemployment is still highly elevated, and job growth is once again decelerating.  There should be no question that fiscal drag and general political dysfunction continues to hurt working families.

      Meanwhile, where is all that growth going?  Clearly, not so much to those who depend on paychecks but to those who depend on asset portfolios.

      Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

      by Meteor Blades on Tue Oct 22, 2013 at 07:18:03 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  no reason to believe LFPR will rise (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TheLizardKing, fladem

    Most analysis expect that our long term LFPR will settle at around 61% or so (give or take .5%) when the boomers are all out, so any expectation that it is going to rise in the near term is wishful thinking (and is why I discount anyone's analysis who says something along the lines of "if the LFPR was x, then unemployment would be higher", typically the kind of claptrap one hears on Hannity).  The LFPR isn't going higher and the vast bulk of the labor force "dropouts" are a) retired, b) in school, or c) staying home for family reasons.  The number of not in the labor force but want a job (the truly disillusioned) has dropped by 600k over the last year.  

    •  Uh-huh, the Economic Policy Institute... (5+ / 0-)

      ...is just like Hannity.

      Here's the reality regarding missing workers.

      Yes, it's true that the LPFR will not return to where it was because of baby boomer retirements. But most analysts say it will rise again somewhat (assuming the economy improves).

      Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

      by Meteor Blades on Tue Oct 22, 2013 at 06:47:32 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Is that a projection from 2007? n/t (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Eric Nelson

        Obama 2012 http://whatthefuckhasobamadonesofar.com/

        by jiffypop on Tue Oct 22, 2013 at 06:53:24 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Aren't those already counted in the (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        TheLizardKing

        Not in the Labor Force, but want a Job category?  

        The longer the LFPR stays low, the less likely it will rise in any significant way, as the boomer wave overtakes any potential new entrants.  

        I actually think we are just a few years away from full employment and wage inflation due to those boomer retirements (especially in skilled/educated positions).  

        •  I agree with your second paragraph... (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          bmcphail, bobswern, Eric Nelson

          ...Couldn't be otherwise.

          But the reality of this tepid report—to describe it generously—is that the economy for millions of Americans 52 months after the Great Recession officially ended remains deeply troubled.

          The number of discouraged workers are higher than last year. past year. And more already-unemployed workers left the job force than found a job last month, something that has been happening for more than three years. Policy changes that can't occur because of the make-up of Congress are sorely needed to kick-start the economy if we're ever to emerge from the doldrums that some people have been predicting for four years would end in the next couple of months.

          Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

          by Meteor Blades on Tue Oct 22, 2013 at 07:40:44 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  It's worse. (0+ / 0-)

            Change the range of the presented data and it gives a broader picture of what's happening:

            Job statistics 2003-2013

            I'm not getting hotlinking to work, sorry.

            Well the point is, if you look at the overall pattern pre- and post-recession, what we have now is the exact same mediocre job situation as the entire Bush administration, and the problems we now have are not acute sequels of the crash but endemic and systematic.

            This didn't happen by chance, but by design.  We need to revamp the way the economy is regulated to favor jobs over capital and to discourage outsourcing.

            We are the principled ones, remember? We don't get to use the black hats' tricks even when it would benefit us. Political Compass: -6.88, -6.41

            by bmcphail on Tue Oct 22, 2013 at 07:58:16 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  You won't see this (0+ / 0-)

            but there is a part of that argument that doesn't make sense.  U4 is supposed to include discouraged workers - workers who are not actively looking for a job.

            So much of the debate about the LFPR is about people who when asked say the aren't looking for work, but are still counted by analysis like EPI as discouraged.

            In fact, your statement that "discouraged workers" are increasing isn't supported by the BLS data.  In fact, when you include discouraged workers the rate has gone from 8.3 to 7.7.  Moreover, U6, the broadest measure, has decline by more than the U3 rate.

            My point isn't to say everything is fine, but to suggest that there is significant complexity in the different measurements of "discouraged workers" that frankly is very poorly understood.

            •  BLS category of "discouraged workers" .... (0+ / 0-)

              ...covers only those who have looked sometime in the past 12 months but not in the past four weeks. The category does not include discouraged workers who are so discouraged they haven't looked in the past 12 months.

              Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

              by Meteor Blades on Tue Oct 22, 2013 at 12:03:57 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  How likely is someone (0+ / 0-)

                who hasn't looked for a job in a year to return to the labor force?  If someone hasn't looked in a year, the implication is that they have other means to support themselves.

                There is complexity here that is being ignored.

                Re-read your own sentence - they haven't looked for a job in a year.  That is a long time to not even try.

                •  This doesn't deal with the reality of the... (0+ / 0-)

                  ...situation. Remember back a few years ago when the concern was that the unemployment rate would rise when the economy started getting better because people who had dropped out of the labor force out of discouragement would see the improvement as a good reason to return to their search? Obviously, the majority of people who bail out for a year aren't likely to come back. But, as you state, there IS a complexity here. But the simple version of the analysis is that somebody who opts out for a year is permanently gone. That's a mistake when 4.1 million people have been out of work for six months or longer.

                   

                  Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

                  by Meteor Blades on Tue Oct 22, 2013 at 01:32:50 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

      •  Day care costs? (0+ / 0-)

        From what I hear, day care costs are so high that for many couples, having one parent stay home makes more and more sense. (Even 30 years ago, I had several years when it did not make economic sense to work; I kept working, part-time, because I was afraid if I didn't, I'd never be able to get back into my profession. In hindsight I wish I'd taken that risk.) And some of the 50+ "not in labor force" people may be caring for grandbabies.

        I'd love to see numbers from a survey that asks "are you caring for a child under age 10?" and if the answer is "yes," records that as "working as full-time parent/grandparent" rather than "not in workforce."

      •  Incredible, but expected, disinformation and... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Eric Nelson

        ...pure bullshit from the Wall Street DINOs.

        Meteor Blades, THANK YOU for refuting this bullshit!

        Additionally, here's Earth-based data--you know, for the 99%--as noted from Jared Bernstein in the NY Times, from just a couple of hours ago...

        A Discouraging Picture
        By JARED BERNSTEIN
        New York Times
        October 22, 2013, 11:08 am

        ...It’s just a very discouraging picture. Over the most recent quarter, payrolls were up an average of 143,000 per month, down from 182,000 in the second quarter, and 207,000 in the first quarter.

        Private payrolls expanded by only 129,000 a month on average last quarter, well down from the average monthly gain of 212,000 (itself just a moderate pace of employment growth) in the first quarter of the year...
        ...

        ...The pattern of deceleration seems to me a lot more consistent with same weak demand story that’s been plaguing this disappointing recovery for years.

        What’s that? We’re in a recovery? Yes, and have been so for four years. But you just don’t see enough of it in the job market. Unemployment is still highly elevated, and job growth is once again decelerating.

        Yes, financial institutions have been turning handsome profits — that growth has to be going somewhere (note that stocks opened higher Tuesday, based on the likely correct notion that the Fed would continue to put off the taper) — but paychecks are barely beating (low) inflation.

        When so much economic inequality is built into the structure of our economy, that’s exactly the result we should expect when the job market is weak...

        "I always thought if you worked hard enough and tried hard enough, things would work out. I was wrong." --Katharine Graham

        by bobswern on Tue Oct 22, 2013 at 10:34:19 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  It's Obvious the President Was Behind the Shutdown (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ZedMont

    To hide these numbers.

    Remember, you read it here first.
    Coming soon to a GOP talking point near you.

  •  IT'S OBAMA'S FAULT! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Meteor Blades

    He keeps forcing us Republicans to do strange things we wouldn't ordinarily do, like shutting down the government, sequestering money, threatening the debt limit, repealing Obamacare over and over and over, and criticizing the difficulty uninsured people are having accessing the Obamacare we are trying to kill before they can.  

    All we're asking is that he adopt the Mitt Romney/Paul Ryan agenda.  Just one thing.  Simple as that.  But noooooooooo, he just has to COMPLICATE everything by insisting on compromise(ptooey), which Ted Cruz will tell you is to the Tea Party what garlic is to vampires.

    You'll see garlic-breathed vampires singing Ave Maria before we (ptooey) compromise with the Kenyan with the terrorist name and the un-American swagger who doesn't know his place.

    Blue, blue, my world is blue... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h6cPXvTqasg

    by ZedMont on Tue Oct 22, 2013 at 06:50:59 AM PDT

  •  Do I even show up in numbers like that? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Nada Lemming, Eric Nelson

    I'm constantly applying for jobs, but still unemployed, and not on gov't assistance.

    Am I and those like me simply 'invisible' to such statistics?

    •  The Current Population Survey includes as... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ZedMont, Eric Nelson

      ...unemployed anyone who is looking for work. The results are, of course, an extrapolation based on the 60,000 households that are directly contacted, not an actual headcount.

      Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

      by Meteor Blades on Tue Oct 22, 2013 at 06:59:27 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  You still show up (0+ / 0-)

      the unemployment rate is derived from a survey, not from unemployment insurance rolls.

    •  You would be counted as unemployed (0+ / 0-)

      Because you are actively seeking work.

      If they happen to survey you, that is.

      And God said, "Let there be light"; and with a Big Bang, there was light. And God said "Ow! Ow My eyes!" and in a flash God separated light from darkness. "Whew! Now that's better. Now where was I. Oh yea . . ."

      by Pale Jenova on Tue Oct 22, 2013 at 07:00:27 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Government uncertainty depressing numbers? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    oofer

    Although the shutdown didn't hit until Oct. 1, it was widely talked about for weeks before that. Businesses do not like uncertainty and instability. So if you're a business, thinking about hiring, it stands to reason that you'd hold off until you could see what Washington was going to do. And individuals (especially federal employees) probably held off spending in anticipation.

    I also suspect that propaganda about the ACA (not necessarily the law itself) is depressing hiring, because businesses really don't know or understand what the impact will be. None of us do, actually, and it will take past Jan. 1 to see -- we all need to adjust to having options that aren't tied to a job. And health care providers won't want to hire new people until they see the effects of the new system too.

    So I would expect hiring to be dicey until spring, due to the uncertainties of both of these changes.

     

  •  lots of news, all KINDS of news: (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    oofer

    Addington's perpwalk? TRAILHEAD of accountability for Bush-2 Crimes. @Hugh: There is no Article II power which says the Executive can violate the Constitution.

    by greenbird on Tue Oct 22, 2013 at 07:11:03 AM PDT

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