Stories

Majority of new hires are people of color for first time in history

Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

People of color now comprise a majority of new hires for the first time in U.S. history, according to the Washington Post's analysis of Labor Department data dating back to 1970.

Why it matters: Minority hires overtook white hires last year, a sign of the shifting demographics of the country's workforce. It means that minority families, who on average earn less and are less wealthy than whites, are gaining more financial security.

By the numbers: Minorities in their prime working age (25 to 54) have gained at least 4.5 million new jobs since 2016, while the same can be said for only 700,000 white workers.

  • The milestone is the result of more baby boomers retiring and more minority women entering the workforce, per the Post.

Yes, but: It is unclear whether minority groups will hold on to these new jobs if job growth slows and the economy slides into a recession.

  • Marianne Wanamaker, an economist and former member of Trump’s Council of Economic Advisers, told the Post: "We’ve seen a lot of gains in employment among lower-income and lower-education groups. But it is precisely those groups that are vulnerable to layoffs if economic activity slows."

Go deeper: Black people are jumping back faster into the workforce