Employment, pre- and post-Covid

on

Comparing job growth before and after the Covid pandemic, attempting to remove the effect of the pandemic.

In a Facebook discussion, someone complained about President Biden’s claim of large job growth by using pandemic-era lows as a starting point. It’s a legitimate question. (1)Biden’s Job Growth Chart Ignores Impact of Pandemic, https://www.factcheck.org/2024/02/bidens-job-growth-chart-ignores-impact-of-pandemic/ (2)“Biden’s claim is correct: the US economy added about 14.8 million jobs between Biden’s first full month in office, February 2021, and January 2024, more jobs than were added in any previous four-year presidential term. However, it’s important to note that Biden took office in an unusual pandemic context that makes meaningful comparison to other periods very difficult.” Fact checking President Joe Biden’s State of the Union, https://www.cnn.com/2024/03/07/politics/fact-check-joe-biden-state-of-the-union/index.html (3)“There’s a reasonable argument that a more accurate picture of job creation under Trump and Biden should set aside the collapse in employment during the early pandemic and the bounce back from that collapse in 2021. Even so, Biden beats Trump handily. Under Biden, from January 2022 to December 2023, employment grew at an average annual rate of 2.4 percent compared to a 1.5 percent rate under Trump from January 2017 to February 2020. That’s another Biden win, this time by a margin of 60 percent.” Data Don’t Lie: Biden’s Economic Record is Much Better than Trump’s, https://washingtonmonthly.com/2024/01/26/data-dont-lie-bidens-economic-record-is-much-better-than-trumps/ I asked how to create an analysis that removes or diminishes the effect of the pandemic, but I didn’t receive a specific response that I could use in an analysis.

I decided to create two periods of time: Pre- and post-pandemic. I ended the first period when the trend of job levels was its highest level before the pandemic. I started the second period when the jobs level returned to the pre-pandemic level. Both private and nonfarm job levels reached pre-pandemic highs in February 2020. Both returned to values close to that level around June 2022. Graphically, this is shown in Chart 1, using nonfarm jobs as the measure.

Table 1 shows the results of an analysis that produced the average monthly change in jobs for three sectors: Nonfarm, private sector, and government. I used nonfarm as that is the sector most commonly cited in monthly jobs reports and discussion. I used the other two sectors based on recommendation from the Facebook discussion. I started the first period of job trends with February 2017, as that was the first full month of the Trump Administration, and ended the second period with March 2024, which is the latest available data.

I asked someone (something) to explain this table:

This table can be used to analyze employment trends over time and to compare the growth or changes in employment across different sectors. Notably, the Government sector saw a relatively higher percentage increase during the second period compared to the first, and the overall monthly change rates for all sectors were higher in the second period than in the first. This could indicate a faster pace of job creation or recovery during the second period. (emphasis added)

There may be other ways to carry out this analysis. I welcome suggestions.

References

References
1 Biden’s Job Growth Chart Ignores Impact of Pandemic, https://www.factcheck.org/2024/02/bidens-job-growth-chart-ignores-impact-of-pandemic/
2 “Biden’s claim is correct: the US economy added about 14.8 million jobs between Biden’s first full month in office, February 2021, and January 2024, more jobs than were added in any previous four-year presidential term. However, it’s important to note that Biden took office in an unusual pandemic context that makes meaningful comparison to other periods very difficult.” Fact checking President Joe Biden’s State of the Union, https://www.cnn.com/2024/03/07/politics/fact-check-joe-biden-state-of-the-union/index.html
3 “There’s a reasonable argument that a more accurate picture of job creation under Trump and Biden should set aside the collapse in employment during the early pandemic and the bounce back from that collapse in 2021. Even so, Biden beats Trump handily. Under Biden, from January 2022 to December 2023, employment grew at an average annual rate of 2.4 percent compared to a 1.5 percent rate under Trump from January 2017 to February 2020. That’s another Biden win, this time by a margin of 60 percent.” Data Don’t Lie: Biden’s Economic Record is Much Better than Trump’s, https://washingtonmonthly.com/2024/01/26/data-dont-lie-bidens-economic-record-is-much-better-than-trumps/

Comments

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.