The November employment numbers, released today by the Labor Department, show continued weakness in the labor market. The economy added only 39,000 jobs last month, not nearly enough to absorb new entrants let alone to make headway at reducing the pool of the unemployed. As a result, the unemployment rate ticked up 0.2 percentage point to 9.8 percent last month.
For the past few months, The Hamilton Project has examined the “job gap,” or the number of months it would take to get back to pre-recession employment levels while absorbing the 125,000 people who enter the labor force each month. This month we will also continue our look at longer-term employment trends, focusing specifically on the plight of male workers in the United States.