June 7, 2013

Modest Job Gains for May, Full Labor Market Recovery Still Far Off

Keith Hall

Former Senior Research Fellow
Summary

The Bureau of Labor Statistics announced today that the U.S. economy added 175,000 new jobs in May, slightly below this year’s average of approximately 189,000 jobs per month. Mercatus Center senior research fellow Keith Hall, a former BLS commissioner, said that the current modest job growth numbers indicate that it will take several years for the labor market to fully recover from the Great Recession.

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The Bureau of Labor Statistics announced today that the U.S. economy added 175,000 new jobs in May, slightly below this year’s average of approximately 189,000 jobs per month. Mercatus Center senior research fellow Keith Hall, a former BLS commissioner, said that the current modest job growth numbers indicate that it will take several years for the labor market to fully recover from the Great Recession.

“Both the unemployment and labor force participation rates were essentially unchanged—rising from 7.5 percent to 7.6 percent and from 63.3 percent to 63.4 percent, respectively. 

“A full labor market recovery still seems years away, as we continue to have the same modest progress as in 2012. Job growth continues to basically keep up with population growth as the employment ratio remains at a low 58.6 percent—the same as in 2012.”