14.5 Million People Battling It Out for 2.4 Million Full-Time Jobs

-- building trades unemployment insurance rally --Starting to feel better about the economy?

If so, then there is a very good chance that the media has convinced you to feel this way. In the past month or so, the airwaves have been inundated with people telling you that the recession is over, and that the United States economy is starting to grow once again.

While this may be true from a strictly technical perspective, most Americans aren't feeling as though things are getting better.

The unemployment rate in the country continues to rise, consumer confidence remains at rock-bottom levels and the housing market remains stagnant at best.

To illustrate the point of just how bad the labor market continues to be in the United States, the US Labor Department recently released their July numbers that claim that a full 14.5 million "officially" unemployed people are battling it out for 2.4 million available full-time jobs.

It should be noted that the true number of unemployed people is much higher than 14.5 million, as the "official" number doesn't include people who have given up looking for work or people who have taken part-time jobs when they desire full-time work.

The fact of the matter is that the US economy won't begin to significantly improve until people start going back to work. While the pace of job losses have been slowing as of late, there is nothing to indicate that there is a wave of new job opportunities lurking just around the corner.

Instead, many people are predicting that the United States may have to deal with a high unemployment rate for a significant period of time. This will (obviously) weigh on the economy and make achieving significant growth nearly impossible.

To indicate how bad things currently are, "the number of jobless people reached little more than double the number of full-time job openings" in the last recession, according to the New York Times.

The $64,000 question right now is - which sectors are going to put millions of people back to work in the United States over the coming decade? Manufacturing? Manufacturing what exactly? Construction? Retail?

An even better question that I am sure many people will ask after reading the New York Times article is - where are these 2.4 million available full-time jobs at?

Source: New York Times - U.S. Job Seekers Exceed Openings by Record Ratio

Photo by: aficio2008

Filed under: The Economic Meltdown

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