As Pres. Biden’s recovery plans continue to roll out, the country’s economy is seeing the start of a healing process of bringing people safely back to work. Some few restrictions on business operations have been lifted, since millions of Americans have already received vaccination shots as protection against COVID-19.
Last Friday, the US Labor Department announced that job growth has soared at its fastest pace since last summer and during the month of March. Although the drop in unemployment rate did not exceed the 6% expectation, the actual numbers in March, exceeded the estimated numbers of non-farm workers who will find employment, or will return to their old jobs.
No Significant Reactions Yet from Stock Markets
Statistically, a Dow Jone survey placed the equivalent of the 6% at 675,000. However, as many as 916,000 represent the unemployed 6% who have returned to work. The presumption being most of those who used to hold part-time or odd jobs prior to the vaccination rollout, were able to return to their former jobs or have taken new job positions. One report concluded that part-time workers went from a previous 11.1% that went down to 10.7%.
Although the stock markets did not react to the Labor Department’s announcement, it was mainly due to the fact that the trading halted in observance of the Lenten Week’s Good Friday holiday. Wall Street offices were closed the whole day while the bond market operated only for a short period of time during the day.
Industries that Have Been Exhibiting Employment Gains
Various industries showed employment gains particularly in the hospitality and entertainment sectors, which were strongly affected by the coronavirus pandemic. As 6 million American citizens lost their jobs last year, the labor force reported a continuing increase in number of unemployed workers. Compared to February last year, the current labor force participation rate, went down by 1.8% even after 347,000 workers returned to work.
According to chief market strategist at Prudential Financial Quincy Krosby, another wave of coronavirus still hangs above our heads, and it is worrisome that if that happens, it could lead to more businesses closing down. The labor force still has a long way to go in seeing the more than 7.9 million Americans still reported as unemployed since February last year, find equitable work in a still recovering economy .