Just what is the true state of the U.S. labor market?
1. Some folks think this, the still-alarmingly-high U-3 unemployment rate, accurately shows how were’s doing:
2. But it is really? The U-3 rate, I would argue, has been rendered unhelpful and unenlightening due to the collapse in the labor force participation rate:
3. Many discouraged workers and part-timers who want full-time work show up in the U-6 unemployment rate:
4. And the percentage of Americans working as a share of the total population seems dead in the water:
5. And we’re only getting trend jobs growth, just enough to deal with population growth – but not enough to close the jobs gap,
I dunno. The labor market still looks to be in a depression to me. Getting better? At a glacial pace by some measures. Not at all by others.