April 2022 Job Gains Demonstrate Government Intervention Not Necessary

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Today the federal government reported that the U.S. economy gained 428,000 jobs last month (similar to the number added in March). Those gains demonstrate that the economy can recover from the pandemic better without government intervention, CEI experts explain. In fact, removing government barriers would be the best aid government could provide.

Statement by Sean Higgins, CEI research associate:

“Friday’s Labor Department report that the economy gained 428,000 jobs in April, setting the unemployment rate at 3.6 percent, is further proof that government stimulus programs are not needed to jump-start the economy. We just need the government to get out of the way and allow the economy to heal itself.

“The department reported that 1.7 million people said they were unable to work because their employer closed or lost business due to the Covid-19 pandemic, down from 2.5 million in March and 4.2 million in February. Businesses are finding ways to cope and adapt on their own. It is unlikely the current picture would be nearly as positive if the Biden administration had gotten its way last year and implemented its vaccine mandate upon businesses with more than 100 employees.” 

Statement by Ryan Young, CEI senior fellow:

“This week’s jobs report gives another data point that the economy has mostly recovered from COVID. Unemployment is at 3.6 percent. Labor force participation is at 62.2 percent, just a tick below what it was in 2015. compared to a pre-pandemic level of 63.4 percent, and a COVID trough of 60.2 percent.

“The record number of 11.5 million unfilled job openings isn’t due to the virus. Inflation is making it difficult to figure out what fair compensation looks like. Labor market frictions like occupational licenses and endless permits make it difficult or even illegal for qualified people to join the workforce. Trade barriers cause supply network problems that are echoing throughout the labor market. Congress should turn its attention away from still more COVID deficit spending and towards these more pressing issues.”