Employment Research Brief
Falling Unemployment Reiterates Broad Job Recovery;
Investor Sentiment Strong
Unemployment rate nears parity with pre-pandemic. Staff counts expanded by 431,000 in March, helping lower the unemployment rate to 3.6 percent — only 10 basis points above the February 2020 measure. Weekly initial jobless claims have also fallen to levels comparable with before the health crisis. Overall, the labor market has generally returned to where it was just about two years prior, which is a more rapid improvement than in previous recessions. It took over three years for the employment base to return to its previous size, following the dot-com bubble, and about double that for the Global Financial Crisis; however, the composition of the labor pool has changed. Some sectors have expanded to new highs, while others continue to lag. It is in these areas, such as with leisure and hospitality positions, where employment growth is expected to be concentrated in the coming months.