Talking Points: The Employment Situation: Nearly every indicator except the headline unemployment rate suggests an economy with no labor-side inflationary pressure and substantial headroom for cyclical growth:
Five Equitable Growth Graphs
Ten Talking Points:
- Labor market still much looser than at the business cycle peaks of 2007 or 2001.
- Prime-age employment rate of only 78% vs. 80% or 82%.
- Real wage growth does not suggest an economy at full employment
- Nominal wage growth stalled for median worker.
- Nominal wage growth not fast enough to keep inequality from rising further.
- Long-term unemployment still abnormally high by 10%-points as a share of all unemployed workers
- Low headline unemployment rate pretty much the only labor market indicator suggesting an economy at full employment
- Other indicators are still suggesting considerable headroom for faster growth and higher cyclical employment
- In retrospect Bernanke-Yellen judgment clearly wrong back in 2013-4 that economy was nearing full employment and accelerating inflation.
- Economy still very, very far indeed from anything that might be called "full employment" for African Americans.