According to the latest monthly employment survey (due out later today) from the National Federation of Independent Business, there is more opportunity and better pay coming our way.
The survey of U.S. small-business owners finds:
- Job growth continued in February.
- Firms increased employment by 0.34 workers per firm on average over the past few months, following equally good readings in December and January.
- Some parts of Main Street remain closed or seriously restricted, but overall the economy continues to open, with New York and California lagging.
- 40% (seasonally adjusted) of all owners reported job openings they could not fill in the current period, up 7 points from January.
- 33% have openings for skilled workers (up 5 points) and 16% have openings for unskilled labor (up 4 points).
- Overall, 56% reported hiring or trying to hire in February, up 5 points from January. Owners have plans to fill open positions, with a seasonally adjusted net 18% planning to create new jobs in the next three months, up 1 point from January.
Once politicians are through legislating emergency interventions, will the incentive be enough for workers to take these jobs, wonders James Freeman in the WSJ.
From NFIB Chief Economist William Dunkelberg:
The Covid-19 pandemic continues to disrupt the labor market with significant populations of otherwise working adults having to stay home to care for family members, protect themselves from contracting the virus, or not able to transition previous work experience quickly to available jobs.
Improved unemployment insurance benefits may also make some workers reluctant to take a new job. In over 30 states, cumulative financial assistance payments available exceed a $15/hour (before taxes) job.
From the WSJ’s Hannah Lang:
Most businesses are optimistic about the economic recovery this year as coronavirus vaccines are more widely distributed and hiring picked up slowly across the country, a Federal Reserve report said Wednesday.
The Fed’s periodic compilation of anecdotes from business contacts, known as the Beige Book, said the U.S. economy continued to grow modestly in the first several weeks of 2021, though some industries, such as leisure and hospitality, continued “to be restrained by ongoing Covid-19 restrictions.”
“Economic activity expanded modestly from January to mid-February,” the report said, adding that “most businesses remain optimistic regarding the next 6-12 months.”
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