After having received e-mails regarding Mark Thoma’s post on types of unemployment about who was included and excluded from the per centages, I thought a note on the relevance of the employment to population ratio to be worth repeating from comments on that post.

Lifted from comments by run 75441 regarding “unemployment”here:

…[D]id everyone finally awaken to the fact we are experiencing a “new and lower” plateau of people in the Civilian Labor Force as a percentage on the Non-Institutional Civilian Population. It is ~1.6% lower than what it was immediately after the 2001 Recession experienced 8 years ago which equates to ~ 4million additional people in the Not In Labor Force.

Eventually people will re-enter the Labor Force??? For 8 years now much of US Labor has been waiting for the tsunami of job creation that was supposed to come, has not come yet, and I doubt will come soon if . . . if at all. They waited too long to be concerned about unemployed Labor. For almost as many years, states have been engaging in training programs for unemployed workers, and it has not had an impact upon Unemployment or those relegated to the Not In Labor Force because the jobs are not there. Unless there is some serious job creation, outstripping increases in population growth; the plateau of 65.1% is here to stay and will probably drop lower.

Spencer’s chart of “Nonfarm Business Labor Share” here: puts much into perspective for Labor its share of profits/wages since 1982 as shown here: “Productivity Growth.” That share has been shrinking with the result of fewer people working the same numbers of hours for lower wages as productivity increases. The paradigm of higher productivity creating higher wages or less time worked as Tom Walker suggests, is at least 8 years dead. The increases in productivity is the result of few workers workering and lower hours while wages are dropping or are stagnant. We also have the issue of greater technological advances incorporating more artificial intelligence which will sideline even more labor.

[Eight] years of [S]tructural Unemployment is not a normal event. There is something radically wrong when Unemployment hovers at higher than normal levels and more people become structurally disenfranchised from the Civilian Labor Force. I might suggest more of the profits is going to Capital rather than Labor and job creation. The infrastructural costs in the US has always been higher than our Asian neighbors and this does include Healthcare Cantab. Hanging overhead is the chance much of the benefits and protective laws making up this infrastural cost may be shuffled into the background for the purpose of creating low wage jobs.

Thoma’s article is a nice review of economic history and I hope a basis for some new ideas breaking down the old pardigms of economics. It is not much more than that for now.

UPDATE: Laurent Guerby, in comments, reminds us of his review of this issue back at the end of January: Original link (French); Babelfish translation to English. Previously discussed in a Guest Post by run74551 at AB here.