Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10419/223455
Authors: 
Komlos, John
Year of Publication: 
2020
Series/Report no.: 
CESifo Working Paper 8383
Abstract: 
The official U.S. unemployment rate is an inadequate measure of actual labor market conditions. This poses a major challenge for researchers and confuses both the public and policy makers. A new definition of unemployment is proposed. It considers those part-time workers who would like to work full time as 62.7% employed and 37.3% unemployed, inasmuch as this is the proportion of time they worked relative to full-time workers prior to the pandemic. In addition, in contrast to the BLS, we consider those workers who are wanting to work but have not searched for work within the prior month as being unemployed. We find that the actual unemployment rate in May 2020 was 24.4% or 183% of the headline rate of 13.3%.
Subjects: 
covid-19
pandemic
unemployment rate
labor market slack
discouraged workers
involuntary part-time workers
JEL: 
B40
C82
J40
J49
J69
Document Type: 
Working Paper

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