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  • Writer's pictureJay Metcalf

The 2021 Labor Market by the Numbers

Updated: May 22, 2023

The US ended the year at an unemployment rate of 3.9% which historically is great. Total labor force engagement, meaning the people working, is sitting at 61.9% which is lower than it was a year ago in February of 2020.

Interestingly, based on household survey data, people who are working from home due to the pandemic is at 11.1%.

In the 12 months of 2021, average hourly rates for all employees (excluding farm workers) rose 4.7% overall to $31.31/hr with nonsupervisory and production employees coming in at $26.61 - a rise of 18 cents. This is compared to an inflation rate of 7% for 2021 (Bloomberg).

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