U.S. jobless claims haven’t been this low since September 1968 – for the week ending April 2, initial jobless claims fell to 166,000 (a decrease of 5,000).
Over half (66%) of workers in the U.S. are considering a job change in order to keep up with inflation. Requests to work remotely are increasing as gas prices skyrocket – a quarter of those thinking about looking for a new job also plan on ensuring that role allows working from home. Workers already working from home (24%) are planning on continuing to do so until gas prices decrease. A whopping 75% of workers feel that employers should increase pay rates during economic inflation.
A mild recession has been forecasted, beginning late 2023. “It is now clear that price stability … is likely to only be achieved through a restrictive monetary policy stance that meaningfully dents demand,” Deutsche Bank economists wrote, according to CNN.
Although concerns are rampant, the labor shortage has decreased slightly while the U.S. services sector experiences a faster growth rate in March when compared to February. “There was an uptick in business activity in March, but respondents have indicated that they continue to be impacted by capacity constraints, logistical challenges and inflation,” said Anthony Nieves, chair of the ISM’s Services Business Survey Committee. “Labor shortages have eased slightly as Covid-19 cases have declined and public-health restrictions have been relaxed.”
According to insight from the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, an increase in quits (aka the Great Resignation) should be expected with a fast economic recovery. When taking a closer look much of the quits momentum is from young/less-educated workers in industries that bore the brunt of challenges via the pandemic.
Solid job growth is expected for Q2 of this year, though challenges remain for hiring and retaining employees. The unemployment rate is forecasted to near 3% by late 2022, pointing to a continued labor shortage throughout the year.
The manufacturing sector in the U.S. experienced growth in March, but at a slower clip than February. “The March Manufacturing PMI registered 57.1%, a decrease of 1.5 percentage points from the February reading of 58.6%,” said Timothy Fiore, chair of the ISM’s Manufacturing Business Survey Committee. “This figure indicates expansion in the overall economy for the 22nd month in a row after a contraction in April and May 2020.”
Ever wonder what the highest-paid STEM role is? Drum roll please…it’s ‘computer and information systems managers’. This occupation brings in an annual mean wage of $162,000. Right behind that are ‘architectural and engineering managers’ bringing $158,970 per year and ‘natural sciences managers’ at $156,110 annually. The annual mean wage across all computer-related occupations is $99,620 with software developers making an annual mean wage of $120,990 (btw software developer is the most common STEM category – there are 1.4 million of these jobs in the U.S.). The lowest-paying STEM occupation? That goes to forest and conservation technicians and agricultural technicians at $43,420 and $44,850 respectively. The overall mean wage for STEM jobs is $100,900 (it’s $55,260 for non-STEM).