High Frequency Economics’ chief economist Carl Weinberg sat down with Business Insider CEO Henry Blodget. Weinberg says that as the labour market strengthens we get to a place where it is hard to find people to fill positions. Employers have to start raising wages to steal employees from other places. Following is a transcript of the video.
Blodget: And you have a great chart in your recent note: where we are in the long-term cycle on jobless claims. We’re really at a better level that we’ve seen in many, many years. But a lot of people argue that the unemployment rate and those measures are not capturing the misery in the economy, maybe due to wages or different kinds of jobs. Do you feel like there is — is that an accurate picture of what’s happening in the economy?
Weinberg: Well, maybe so. It may be understating the amount of discomfort that people have with their current jobs. There might be disaffected workers who don’t feel that it’s ok to come back to work in the economy. That all may be true.
But this is the same measure that we’ve looked going back for decades. And everything we know about this measure says that there comes a point where become so low that workers can’t find new employees to fill the jobs that have to be filled and they have to start raising wages to steal them away from other employers. And when employees feel safe enough in their jobs that they feel comfortable asking for higher wages. And that’s the point that all of our experience tells us we’re at right now. There’s a supply of labour and a demand for labour. And as Alan Greenspan said, ‘The laws of supply and demand have not been repealed.’
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