It’s standard practice in news stories to refer to France’s economy as a basket case. The NYT went this route in an article on President Emmanuel Macron’s efforts to rewrite the country’s labor laws.

The article refers to Macron’s efforts to “revitalize” the French economy and then tells readers:

“The code is regarded by many as the wellspring of the country’s malaise and the chief obstacle to generating jobs, leaving the country with an unemployment rate that hovers persistently around 10 percent.”

Of course, many economists regard the German government’s insistence on austerity in spite of low interest rates and low inflation as “the wellspring of the country’s malaise,” but apparently there was no room to mention this fact. Anyhow, it is worth noting that while France has a considerably higher unemployment rate than the United States a larger portion of its prime-age population (ages 25 to 54) have jobs than in the United States.

According to the OECD, the employment-to-population ratio for this age group is 79.6 percent in France, compared to 78.2 percent in the United States. For this age group, the French economy is doing better producing jobs than the U.S. economy, in spite of its malaise.