October 18, 2016

OBOOMA:

Once jobless and uncounted, eager workers could slow Fed rate hike (Howard Schneider, 10/17/16, Reuters)

The crammed-to-capacity parking lot at a job training center in this St. Louis suburb is exhibit A for why the U.S. Federal Reserve remains at odds over the health of the U.S. labor market and how quickly interest rates should rise.

Among those in the building on a recent fall day, 23-year-old Joshua Goodson described his recent work history as a "dead end." Motivated by the prospect of a firm career foothold, he is now in a program at the Family and Workforce Centers of America that includes both a curriculum in heating and air conditioning installation, and the "soft" social skills needed to keep steady employment.

It will take a few months, but "I will get a job, and nail it," he said.

As the nation's six year run of job creation reaches deeper into neighborhoods like Wellston and nearby Ferguson -- site of a police shooting two years ago that highlighted the depressed economic conditions in some U.S. neighborhoods -- Goodson is among a pool of sidelined workers returning to the labor force in unexpected numbers and more readily landing jobs.

That subtle but surprising shift has stoked fresh debate within the Fed over whether to risk slowing a process that is finally drawing in marginalized residents like Goodson, and showing up in middle and lower end incomes.

So much for pressure on wages...

Posted by at October 18, 2016 1:41 PM

  

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