Thursday, January 1, 2015

5 graphs for 2015: #2, not in the labor force, but want a job now

 - by New Deal democrat

This is a continuation of my series on economic relationships I'll be paying particular attention to in 2015.  Here are the first three posts:
Number 2 is straightforward, especially since I have been highlighting it all through 2014.

Some people are so discouraged that they completely stop looking for work.  But if it were available, they say, they would like a job now.  The Census Bureau measures this in the Household jobs Survey every month, under series NILFWJN.

Even in the best of times, about 4.5 million people told the Census Bureau they fit this category. But in and after the 2008-09 recession, this number boomed to over 7 million.  It started to decline, but when Congress cut off extended unemployment benefits at the end of 2013, it rose again, and 1 million more people fit that description now compared with a year ago:

To get down to 4.5 million, 2 million of these people would need to find work.  That's about 1.3% of the labor force.  This is about twice the number of involuntary part-timers I wrote about yesterday.

I certainly hope that this number improves as the economy continues to grow.  That's the expectation, anyway, and I will continue to watch this number closely in 2015.