Jobs report reveals alarming level of long-term unemployment

Feb 5, 2021
This has many economists predicting the economic pain of the pandemic will last long after the economy "recovers."
A new study predicts it will take women and people of color an extra two years to reach pre-pandemic employment levels.
Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

Consumer prices didn't rise in October. That may not be good news.

Nov 12, 2020
Low inflation is a sign that the recovery may be losing steam.
Customers shop at an Arizona mall in June.
Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Nearly two job seekers for every job: What it's like to look for work now

Nov 10, 2020
The unemployment rate is down, and more people are returning to the labor force. But finding a job isn't easy.
A woman closes up a liquor store in Seattle in July. Job searchers are having a hard time finding work during the pandemic.
David Ryder/Getty Images

Jobs have bounced back in some parts of the economy. Others face a long slog.

Nov 6, 2020
More Americans are returning to the labor market. But more are also joing the ranks of the long-term unemployed.
A shuttered business district in Brooklyn in May. Jobs in some face-to-face services, like bars and restaurants, are still down 15% to 30%.
Spencer Platt/Getty Images

The seasonal adjustment to jobless claims has been ... adjusted

Sep 3, 2020
The adjustments smooth out predictable changes in employment, but the pandemic economy has broken them.
This week, the Bureau of Labor Statistics changed its methodology in adjusting for seasonal jobs, like that of a lifeguard. It makes the data more accurate, but also more confusing.
Angela Weiss/AFP via Getty Images

Miscalculation of unemployment data not easy to fix

Jul 1, 2020
The Bureau of Labor Statistics said it might have been undercounting the number of workers classified as "unemployed on temporary layoff."
Hundreds of unemployed Kentucky residents wait in long lines for help with unemployment claims in June.
John Sommers II/Getty Images

How’s the economy? vs. how’s the economy for each of us?

Jun 8, 2020
If you want to answer the second question, you’ve got to 'disaggregate' the data.
Macroeconomic data can help you see the big picture — the forest. But if you want to understand how groups within the economy are doing, examine the trees.
Patrick Pleul/DPA/AFP via Getty Images

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Why was the May unemployment number wrong?

Jun 8, 2020
Marketplace host Kai Ryssdal spoke with former BLS Commissioner Erica Groshen about the "misclassification" error.
Unemployment application forms outside a Florida library.
Chandan Khanna/Getty Images

Meet Rocio, 24, construction worker

Feb 18, 2020
The Bureau of Labor Statistics would categorize Rocio’s job most broadly as “natural resources, construction and maintenance occupations.” One in 10 workers work jobs in that category.
Ben Hethcoat

Meet Kate, 24, new account representative at a bank

Feb 18, 2020
Kate's work is part of the "Sales and Office Occupations," category, like 20% of the U.S. labor force. She has an associate's degree.
Matt Staver