June jobs report: Prime-age employment is highest since 2001
One of the best pieces of news in the June jobs report was a new multi-decade high in the share of people employed in their prime working years.
Driving the news: The employment-to-population ratio among Americans ages 25 to 54 inched up to 80.9% in June. The last time it was that high? April 2001.
- The all-time high in that share was April 2000, when it reached 81.9%.
Flashback: This is a dramatic contrast with the expansion that followed the 2008 recession, which featured a deeply depressed employment-to-population ratio for years.
- The current expansion began just over three years ago. At the equivalent point after the end of that recession (August 2012), the prime-age employment-to-population ratio was 75.7%.
- If that were the current rate, it would mean 5.4 million fewer Americans working.
Between the lines: Women have driven the surge.
- The 75.3% of 25- to 54-year-old women working in June is the highest on record in data that dates to 1948.
- That figure was 74.9% back when the overall employment-to-population ratio peaked 23 years ago.
The bottom line: This expansion is putting Americans to work at rates previously unseen in this century.