A new post from Brookings details how the official unemployment measure is undercounting unemployment during the pandemic. The author notes that 9 million more people received unemployment insurance benefits (almost 30 million Americans) than the number of those estimated to be unemployed by the official unemployment rate (about 21 million). This discrepancy is in part driven by the Payroll Protection Program, which allows employers to pay workers even if not still actually working, and in part by not counting as unemployed workers on furlough who expect to return to their jobs (although many may never). Finally, removing those who are unable to work for family reasons (like caring for children) from the estimated labor force counts can also drive rates downward. #covid-19 #workforce
Brookings describes gaps in unemployment statistics
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