Jobs and Unemployment

Unemployment, underemployment in decline

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A weekly presentation of downloadable charts and short analyses designed to graphically illustrate important economic issues. Updated every Wednesday.

Snapshot for July 07, 1999


Unemployment, underemployment in decline

The levels of both unemployed and underemployed workers in the United Sates have dropped from 1994 to 1998 (see the first figure below). Underemployment includes involuntary part-time workers, discouraged workers, and “marginally attached” workers, who are neither working nor seeking work but indicate that they want to work and have looked for a job within the past year.

1

The decline of the underemployment figures can be attributed to the growth of full-time jobs in the economic recovery of the 1990s. In 1998, the number of part-time jobs declined by 250,000, resulting in fewer opportunities for some underemployed workers, but, on the whole, previously underemployed workers are increasingly migrating to better paying, full-time jobs. (See the second figure for a current profile of unemployed and underemployed workers.)

2

Source: The State of Working America 1998-99 and the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

 

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