So what is happening to the work force?
22% of American adults either moved or know someone who moved during the pandemic, per research from Pew. For context, fewer than 10% of Americans moved to new places in 2019.
Biggest exoduses? New York City and San Francisco.
A caveat – the migration numbers are inflated by a spike in young adults aged 18-30 moving back home during the pandemic.
Also from Pew, parents are getting hit hardest by the pandemic, and mothers AND fathers are faring equally poorly as it relates to job losses. The share of mothers and fathers who were employed and at work plunged with the onset of the coronavirus outbreak and had recovered only partially through September 2020
More parents also are dropping out of the labor force altogether, Pew’s data show. That means they’re not looking for work.
Why do we care?
Both research reports actually highlight a major point – the data is changing, and we don’t actually know for sure where it will end up. I was struck by this quote by an economics professor: “There is no new normal to this. It just keeps getting worse every day,”
I’ll have some longer thoughts on the K-Shaped recovery coming out this weekend. The labor market and the dispersion of the population are shifting, and we don’t know how it will end up. That’s ok, simply acknowledge that things are in motion and continue to manage conservatively.