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Byline: Alberto A. Lim
WHEN THE NATIONAL STATISTICS OFFICE came out with the unemployment figures for April 2009, I was pleasantly surprised. Unemployment had actually decreased from 8 percent in April 2008 to 7.5 percent in April 2009. This at a time when our GDP grew by a mere 0.4 percent in the first quarter of this year over the same quarter last year, compared to 3.9 percent growth in the first quarter of 2008 (relative to the same quarter in 2007). This is referred to as a year-on-year comparison of quarters.
This is even more surprising as National Statistical Coordination Board Secretary General Romulo Virola proclaimed we are teetering on the brink of a recession. The convention to determine a recession is to compare the current quarters growth with the previous quarters growth or a …