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August 5, 2021

US job search gains pace as Covid recedes – leading macroeconomic influencers

US workers actively looking for jobs since early June.

Some economists believe that the mismatch in urgency between job seekers and employers may finally be easing, with more people actively looking to get back to work.

Jason Furman

Jason Furman, economist and professor at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government and a senior fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics (PIIE), retweeted an article by Nick Bunker, the economic research director for North America at the Indeed Hiring Lab who focuses on the US labour market. According to an Indeed job survey, active job search has picked up pace in the US labour market since early June to mid-July, with fewer unemployed workers citing Covid-19 as a reason for not searching for jobs urgently.

The first survey, on the contrary, had found a mismatch in urgency between employers and people looking for jobs. Many employers required staff to meet the sudden rise in demand during the reopening. However, workers stayed away from work due to a number of factors, including Covid risks, childcare needs, and unemployment benefits.

Despite the Delta variant raging across US states, the second Indeed survey found fewer unemployed people unwilling to return to jobs because of the pandemic. Additionally, fewer unemployed workers who were not looking urgently for jobs wanted the vaccination rates to increase before people returned to jobs.

Edward Harrison

Edward Harrison, a senior editor and author of the Credit Writedowns newsletter, shared an article on the US GDP growth under Trump being the worst since the Great Depression. Experts believe that the pandemic was partly to blame, and although there are some instances that make Trump’s record look better, it was not extraordinary.

Experts believe that the Trump administration did not rise to the Covid-19 challenges as it should have in March 2020. However, certain measures such as the legislation for a vaccine-development programme that his government put in motion helped the US economy with one of the quickest recoveries.

Experts believe that despite the economic growth being lower than it was a few decades ago, and especially because of the effects of the pandemic, it cannot be the fault of any president. One plausible reason, however, could be the slowdown in population growth, experts opine.

Adam Posen

Adam Posen, economist and president of the PIIE, retweeted a discussion and speech with Federal Reserve Vice Chair Richard H Clarida on the US economy, Covid-19 recovery, inflation, employment, monetary policy, and more.

The Vice Chair emphasised the most recent gross domestic product (GDP) data revealed that the US economy transitioned from a state of economic recovery to economic expansion in the second quarter of 2021. Additionally, robust development and distribution of effective Covid-19 vaccines, along with the monetary and fiscal policies is expected to continue to support the strong rebound and expansion of the economy this year, although the spread of the Delta variant among a small fraction of the unvaccinated population will be a downside risk.

With respect to recovery in employment, he stated that the US was still in the recovery phase of the cycle in terms of aggregate employment. Consequently, despite the level of real GDP being 0.8% above the level reached in the previous business cycle peak at the end of the second quarter this year, the level of employment remained about seven million below the level reached in the previous business cycle peak.

 

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