We should not be disappointed in the May hiring numbers
Jun 4, 2021

We should not be disappointed in the May hiring numbers

From Christopher Low, chief economist at FHN Financial: "We went into this number with economists expecting 675,000 hires. We got 559,000. I'd say that's still pretty good." We unpack more of the data from today's government report on jobs and unemployment. Plus, the Justice Department is increasing its information-gathering efforts on cyberattacks amid a rise in the frequency and size of ransomware attacks. And, the Biden administration is pushing new incentives for people to get vaccinated. What do we know about how well they work?

Segments From this episode

Which sectors saw gains in hiring during May?

It takes time to for companies to replace their workforces, said Christopher Low, chief economist at FHN Financial, and the U.S. economy is making progress. The May number, 559,000 jobs created, is more than double what a strong month looked like before the pandemic. The adds were in services, with the largest gain coming in leisure and hospitality, "almost 300,000 jobs workers added there," Low said. He noted that the sector is still short about 2.5 million jobs compared to pre-pandemic days.

By normal standards, the May jobs report would be "phenomenal"

That's according to Julia Coronado, founder and president of MacroPolicy Perspectives. She offers some perspective on where hiring and unemployment in the U.S. economy stand now. Coronado also explains the increases in wages for workers that we saw in May.

Biden administration rolls out new vaccine incentives

Jun 4, 2021
About 63% of Americans have gotten at least one vaccine dose. The Biden administration wants to get to 70% by July 4.
From free donuts to lottery entries, do vaccine incentives work?
Scott Olson/Getty Images

Music from the episode

The team

Victoria Craig Host, BBC
Stephen Ryan Senior Producer, BBC
Jonathan Frewin Producer, BBC
Daniel Shin Producer
Jay Siebold Technical Director
Brian Allison Engineer
Meredith Garretson Senior Producer
Erika Soderstrom Producer
Rose Conlon Producer
Alex Schroeder Producer