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A Labor Recovery Like No Other

This chart, posted by labor economist Skanda Armanath, shows how dramatic the recovery has been in restoring the economy from the COVID pandemic.

We have blasted through several employment metrics, and done it in record time. The chart also tells a story that only few economists have grasped. Not only was President Obama left to repair the damage done by the Great Financial Crisis, he also inherited a slow moving disaster that lasted through his predecessor's two terms, essentially fighting two recessions at once. The effect of the China Shock and fighting two wars placed intolerable burdens on the population. The banking collapse simply blew an already shaky foundation right through the ground.

This country has been through a lot, its labor force having being tossed around like a rag doll. But while most recoveries were long and tortuous affairs, this one has been a resounding success.

Remarkably, in poll after poll, Americans express dissatisfaction at the state of the economy, despite technically full employment, strong retail consumption and a host of other positives. It could be that people are naturally predisposed to respond negatively to polls. But this is one of the best economies we're likely to experience and we should hope its sustained for a long time to come.

May 6, 2023


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