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Labor Economy - Essay Example

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Economists believe that the economy of the United State is being sucked into what they refer to as “economic black hole”, a state requiring immediate intervention of economic specialist; otherwise, the economy might never recover. The fact that the economy has been…
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Labor Economy
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Download file to see previous pages The economic meltdown experienced in the US affected the labor market significantly leading to a notable change (Conrad, 2005). Therefore, economist should find ways to recover the affected labor market in their endeavors.
Labor market in the US had somehow a balanced equilibrium in terms of employment before the crisis. Analysts in America noted a relatively low rate of unemployment at 3.9 percent in January 2001. Nevertheless, due to crisis and financial issues, unemployment lost dynamism and increased. The rate of layoff spiked with crisis while the rate of hiring fell down considerably. In March 2005, the official rate of unemployment in the US reached 5.2 percent. It represented 13.6 million people in America who were unemployed, part-time workers out of economic necessity, or had lost courage to look for jobs. This resulted due to recession and crisis surrounding September 11, 2001 (Conrad, 2005).
The rate of labor force participation in United States exhibited a funny trend before and after the crisis. Before the crisis, the rate of labor force participation increased due to continuous entry of women into the labor market. After crisis, they contributed to 66 percent of labor force in 2005 while rate of labor force participation in men declined to 73 percent. Scholars argue that, rate of labor force participation increased due to high entry of women who had accurately planned their future and were able to venture and compete in the labor market (Jacobsen, 2004).
Before the crisis, United States minimum wage remained constant at $ 5.35 per hour but this varied from one county to another. The Congress gave counties power to set minimum wage above federal level. As a result, the counties set an hourly minimum wage. During and after crisis, pursuant of fair labor standards broke the record when they set a constant minimum wage of $5.15 per hour (McDonald, 2007).
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