The Long Road Back to Full Employment: How the Great Recession Compares to Previous U.S. Recessions

August 6, 2010
Employment & Wages, Recessions


As expected, July’s employment numbers suggest that the road to recovery will be long. The economy as a whole lost 131,000 jobs as layoffs of temporary Census workers continued. Private sector employment increased by 71,000 jobs, building on June’s increase of 31,000 jobs. So far this year, the economy has added 654,000 jobs, with 630,000 coming from the private sector.

In past blog posts, The Hamilton Project has explored the “job gap,” which measures the number of jobs the economy needs to create to return to pre-recession employment levels while also absorbing the 125,000 people who typically enter the labor force each month. This month, we also explore how employment levels resulting from the Great Recession compare with the employment impacts of previous recessions.


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