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Corporate profits have been trending down. That's what the Federal Reserve wants to see.

Nov 28, 2023
It means interest rate hikes are having the intended effect. Tapering consumer demand and high labor costs are weighing on earnings.
Corporate profits are feeling the effects of high interest rates and labor costs as well as weaker consumer demand.
Ludovic Marin/AFP via Getty Images

How are health insurance costs reflected in inflation calculations?

Nov 13, 2023
To make the CPI’s health care component more accurate, the Bureau of Labor Statistics changed how it uses health insurance data.
Rather than tracking health insurance premiums, the BLS tracks how much health insurance companies retain of the premiums they receive after paying for services.
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Wage growth cools in October

Nov 3, 2023
Average hourly earnings rose 4.1% year-over-year in October; the rate peaked near 6% in March 2022. The slowdown in wage growth is helping the Fed wrestle inflation lower.
The rate of average hourly earnings growth slowed in October, which is exactly what the Fed hopes might further cool inflation.
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What the number of involuntary part-time workers tells us about the economy

Sep 7, 2022
The "I’d prefer a full-time gig, but I can’t find one” measure can give us a sense of how much slack or unmet potential there is in the labor market.
If involuntary part-time employment starts to tick up, that can be a leading indicator of a slowing economy.
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Federal jobs survey will replace COVID questions with new queries about telework

Sep 5, 2022
It's the end of an era — the pandemic era — for the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Since May 2020, the  Bureau of Labor Statistics has been asking people whether COVID affected the hours they've worked or prevented them from looking for work.
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Workers are picking up extra jobs just to pay for daily necessities

Aug 8, 2022
More people in the United States are working two full-time jobs than ever before, says Lauren Kaori Gurley of The Washington Post.
Olivier Douliery/AFP via Getty Images

What worker productivity numbers can reveal

Dec 9, 2021
Productivity drops can confirm other trends like rising wages and shortages of materials.
Labor productivity is a measure of worker output and can be used by the IRS to forecast tax collections.
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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