Americans are still waiting for a big turnaround in the job market, four years after the last recession officially ended. Many people thinks that, the jobs they are being offered aren’t as good as ones they lost.
Most job market analysts want to see some more months of improvement before they can give unqualified words of cheer to the unemployed and underemployed, even as the official job market report for November 2013 found better-than-expected job creation and a drop in the unemployment rate.
At present, there’s no sign the hiring spigots will flow in 2014, except for workers in high need jobs, some information technology jobs and engineering to name a few. In 2014, many job hunters, and mainly the long time unemployed, can again anticipate sustained challenges.
Frank Lenk, senior economist at the Mid-America Regional Council, who reports twice a year on the Kansas City job market, said “We can’t say happy days are here again for the less-educated or entry-level.”
On Friday, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics issued the most recent national measure of job creation and joblessness, suggested the slog is easing. The unemployment rate sank to its lowest in five years, 7 percent and payroll employment grew by about 203,000 jobs.
Economist Heidi Shierholz at the Economic Policy Institute calculated that at the recent average job creation rate of 175,000 jobs a month, it will be 2020 before the nation returns to the labor market health it had before December 2007.
The experts say, don’t expect private employers to suddenly pour accumulated profits into expanded payrolls, if you’re looking for a job next year. Don’t expect their fears about the costs of the Affordable Care Act to disappear or payroll paring to end.
Don’t plan on the Federal Reserve or Uncle Sam launching big labor-reviving programs. And don’t hope for the dysfunction in Congress to vanish. The severe partisanship in Washington and the ongoing effects of sequester will impede, not foster, job growth, even if there’s not another budget impasse and partial government shutdown.