How Iowa fared after ending federal pandemic unemployment aid early
States that ended supplemental unemployment benefits early saw similar job growth in comparison to those that continued to offer aid, according to a Wall Street Journal analysis.
Why it matters: It suggests the bonus $300 a week was not a primary factor for why unemployed Iowans didn't return to work this last year, despite businesses offering higher pay.
Context: Iowa was one of the first states to exit the federal pandemic unemployment program, on June 17.
- Gov. Kim Reynolds had cited worker shortages.
By the numbers: Nonfarm payrolls rose 1.33% in July from April for states that ended the benefits.
- They rose 1.37% for states that continued benefits.
Yes, but: While the $300 was not the primary reason people remained unemployed, that doesn't mean it had no influence. There were some upticks in employment once states stopped the extra aid.
- In Iowa, unemployment rose from 3.9% in May to 4.1% in July — signaling more people are searching for work.
The big picture: The wide array of reasons why people are still unemployed is complicated.
- Lack of child care, COVID-19 fears, retirement and inability to find a job in a chosen field are all also contributing factors.
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