As President-elect Joseph R. Biden, Jr. prepares to take office this week, his administration and the Federal Reserve are pointed toward a singular economic goal: Get the job market back to where it was before the pandemic hit.
The humming labor backdrop that existed 11 months ago — with 3.5 percent unemployment, stable or rising work force participation and steadily climbing wages — turned out to be a recipe for lifting all boats, creating economic opportunities for long-disenfranchised groups and lowering poverty rates. And price gains remained manageable and even a touch on the low side. That contrasts with efforts to push the labor market’s limits in the 1960s, which are widely blamed for laying the groundwork for runaway inflation. Read more…..
Chart of the Day
In a devastating blow to the already-stalling economic recovery, 140,000 were lost last month, according to the Labor Department. The overall unemployment rate held steady while Black and Latino communities were hardest hit.