- by New Deal democrat
Leading employment indicators of a slowdown or recession
I have been highlighting these throughout the pandemic because of their leading nature for the economy overall. These were positive:
Wages of non-managerial workers
Aggregate hours and wages:
Other significant data:
This was a blockbuster report, but one that was anticipated by the big declines in the weekly new jobless reports during the reference weeks for March.
There were only two negative items: the number of temporary jobs actually declined slightly in March, and average hourly wages for non-supervisory personnel increased an anemic $0.02. There are silver linings in each. Former temporary jobs may be getting converted to permanent jobs; and lower wage service workers have been called back to work in large numbers.
Everything else was up sharply, reflecting an economy that is making substantial strides towards returning to pre-pandemic levels. This is partly because of great vaccination progress (for example, over half of all seniors in the US have been fully vaccinated), and partly a result of spring weather opening up great numbers of outdoor venues. I am particularly impressed that full-time employment was up sharply, while part time employment declined; and that temporary layoffs declined sharply, and permanent job losses declined as well. These were powerful moves in the right direction. Still, even at this rate, it will take the rest of the year to get back to February 2020 levels.