Emerging U.S. Labor Market Trends Report: July 2021
In response to the sluggish rate of job growth and the high number of open job positions, Morning Consult conducted a survey to identify the factors preventing workers from looking for work and accepting open positions. This issue is top of mind for businesses and policymakers given the role that job creation plays in fueling consumption and driving economic growth. Additionally, existing shortages in workers are driving wages higher and limiting businesses’ ability to increase production, both of which are contributing to increases in consumer prices and inflation.
- Expiring unemployment benefits could add up to nearly 2 million jobs this year, but the U.S. economy will remain roughly 4.7 million jobs short of where it was prior to the pandemic.
- Despite a rebound in consumer spending and strong hiring demand, the adult labor force participation rate has forged a lackluster recovery.
- While pockets of labor tightness will persist as the economy adjusts to the new normal, Morning Consult data suggests that much of the recent wage pressures will likely fade as workers return to the labor market en masse and bring with them limited expectations of wage increases.
About the authors
John Leer leads Morning Consult’s global economic research, overseeing the company’s economic data collection, validation and analysis. He is an authority on the effects of consumer preferences, expectations and experiences on purchasing patterns, prices and employment.
John continues to advance scholarship in the field of economics, recently partnering with researchers at the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland to design a new approach to measuring consumers’ inflation expectations.
This novel approach, now known as the Indirect Consumer Inflation Expectations measure, leverages Morning Consult’s high-frequency survey data to capture unique insights into consumers’ expectations for future inflation.
Prior to Morning Consult, John worked for Promontory Financial Group, offering strategic solutions to financial services firms on matters including credit risk modeling and management, corporate governance, and compliance risk management.
He earned a bachelor’s degree in economics and philosophy with honors from Georgetown University and a master’s degree in economics and management studies (MEMS) from Humboldt University in Berlin.
His analysis has been cited in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Reuters, The Washington Post, The Economist and more.
Kayla Bruun is a senior economist at decision intelligence company Morning Consult, where she analyzes consumer spending, inflation and household finance trends, leveraging the company’s proprietary high-frequency data.
Prior to joining Morning Consult, Kayla was a key member of the corporate strategy team at telecommunications company SES, where she produced market intelligence and industry analysis of mobility markets.
Kayla also served as an economist at IHS Markit, where she covered global services industries, provided price forecasts, produced written analyses and served as a subject-matter expert on client-facing consulting projects.
Kayla earned a bachelor’s degree in economics from Emory University and an MBA with a certificate in nonmarket strategy from Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business.
Jesse Wheeler previously worked at Morning Consult as a senior economist.