Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Drop In Job Participation Not Just Demographic

 Perhaps the most notable and consistent touchstone of the 7 years of the Obama administration has been the steady and steep decline in the job participation rate.  We have millions in wage-earning years that are not just unemployed, they've stopped looking for work altogether.

A paltry 63.0% of our labor force, aged 16 and over, has a job.  Any kind of job.

Armchair demographers and Obama political excuse makers have been claiming that the reduction is a simple trend in demographics - there are a glut of folks that are going to college and a similar glut of folks that are hitting retirement age.  Nothing to see here folks, move along...

Luckily, someone crunched the numbers, and as usual, the data tells a different story:

lfpr demographics stretched

Basically what was performed was a look at labor participation for those college kids and retirees if their rates of participation hadn't changed since 2007.  While the graph clearly tends down after this correcting (contributing to some of the Obama apologists' points), it hardly explains everything.  To the contrary, even by holding the demographic factors constant, the massive downturn in participation is shocking.

We're hemorrhaging jobs, and have been ever since Obama took office.  Period.

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