Official job creation numbers came in Friday and the numbers were decent at 175,000. The unemployment figure climbed slightly to 7.6% as more people out of the workforce started looking for employment, again. The Federal Reserve is not expected to ease off on the economic stimulus until 200,000 plus jobs are generated per month for at least several months in a row.
Each day 10,000 baby boomers turn 65 years old in the U.S. Not all in this age group are in the workforce and many who are will not opt to retire. At the same time thousands each day are choosing to retire and leave their jobs behind. Many of the jobs they retire from will need to be filled by co-workers or new hires.
The percentage of labor force participation may become a major issue in the future. With unemployment still very high it is hard to imagine unemployment so low that corporations have problems filling positions. It is already tough filling technical positions. It is only going to get tougher for private enterprise as they compete for the limited talent pool. Public agencies will find it even tougher to compete because they can’t offer the much higher wages available in the private sector.
The end of 2014 may see the U.S coming close to reaching full employment with all the benefits and challenges that come with it. Baby Boomers will still be a part of this workforce, but hopefully most will be working by choice and not by absolute necessity created by the Great Recession. Only time will tell.