The Jobs Dilemma

On the one hand, we have an unemployment rate of 4.7%.  On the other hand, we have essentially record low work force participation of less than 63%.  There are a number of suggested explanations, usually with little or no definitive substantiation.

Employers tend to focus on the lack of potential employees with the appropriate skills.

The opposite view postulates that employers are unwilling to provide appropriate training and/or offer suitable wages.

There is plenty of anecdotal evidence to support either view.  Logic suggests that the problem is complex and solutions are most likely to vary by situation.

For investors, the bottom line is, an economy which, for whatever reasons, is not growing at a pace that is consistent with historical rates of recovery following an economic downturn.

All comments and suggestions are welcome.

Walter J. Kirchberger, CFA®