The US jobs data for May marked one milestone: employment in the US finally returned to the same level it had reached in January 2008. Jobs totalled 138,365,000 then. In the next two years, the labour market lost almost 10 million workers. In adding 217,000 jobs in May 2014—with the unemployment rate unchanged at 6.3%, employment has returned to that peak, 2,312 days later.
Each recovery from a slump or recession since 1945 has taken longer to restore employment to previous levels. From the mild 2001 recession, it took 4 years, from the deep 1980 recession, it took only two years. From the Great Recession of 2008, it has taken six and a half years!
Moreover, in those years, the working age population has also risen. As a result, employment is still way behind the trend that should have been maintained if the Great Recession had not happened. That means…
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