COVID-19

Are workers better off in a “workers economy”?

Kai Ryssdal and Minju Park Dec 16, 2021
Heard on:
HTML EMBED:
COPY
About 4.2 million workers quit their jobs in October, according to the latest Job Openings and Labor Turnover Summary. Fiona Goodall via Getty Images
COVID-19

Are workers better off in a “workers economy”?

Kai Ryssdal and Minju Park Dec 16, 2021
Heard on:
About 4.2 million workers quit their jobs in October, according to the latest Job Openings and Labor Turnover Summary. Fiona Goodall via Getty Images
HTML EMBED:
COPY

Workers are quitting their jobs at near-record levels, many in search of higher pay during the pandemic. But some are facing challenges leaving low-wage service jobs and improving their financial situations.

About 4.2 million workers quit in October, according to the latest Job Openings and Labor Turnover Summary. But among those who left jobs in accommodation and food services, 65% returned to jobs in the same industry and 25% transitioned to retail roles, according to the California Policy Lab.

Heather Long is an economics correspondent for The Washington Post. Long followed former servers and cooks who quit a popular Arkansas restaurant in the past year for a new article, “Life after quitting: What happened next to the workers who left their jobs.” The piece is being adapted into a series for the podcast “Post Reports.”

Click the audio player above to hear Long’s conversation with “Marketplace” host Kai Ryssdal about the project.

There’s a lot happening in the world.  Through it all, Marketplace is here for you. 

You rely on Marketplace to break down the world’s events and tell you how it affects you in a fact-based, approachable way. We rely on your financial support to keep making that possible. 

Your donation today powers the independent journalism that you rely on. For just $5/month, you can help sustain Marketplace so we can keep reporting on the things that matter to you.  

Need some Econ 101?

Our new Marketplace Crash Course is here to help. Sign-up for free, learn at your own pace.