The Des Moines metro's "true" unemployment rate
Unemployment in the Des Moines metro area is at the lowest it's been since before the pandemic, according to latest figures from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
- The metro's 2.8% rate reported in October marks improvement from the steep 12% in April of 2020, right after COVID-19 shutdowns.
Yes, but: One analysis suggests unemployment in the metro is much higher.
- The Ludwig Institute for Shared Economic Prosperity's analysis found that the "true" number of people who were jobless during the height of the pandemic was around 22.7%.
How it works: The institute uses BLS figures and factors in those out of work as well as those who are employed but earning less than a living wage.
- The institute pegs the livable threshold at $20,000, a conservative estimate.
- To compare, the government's individual poverty level threshold is $12,760.
By the numbers: The Des Moines metro's "true" unemployment increased by 8% between 2019 and 2020.
- Last year's "true" unemployment rate balloons to 48% when you add in 16 and 17 year-olds and people working part-time but trying to get full-time work.
Of note: This data is for 2020, and 2021 figures won't be available until next fall.
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