The U.S. economy has come roaring back from pandemic lows, but a disappointing jobs report that fell far short of analysts’ predictions highlighted some potentially worrying trends when it was released Friday.
One of those is that with eight million unfilled jobs there may be a mismatch between available jobs and the skills of workers. And some people appear reluctant to return to work.
President Joe Biden made it clear Monday that he expects people to take jobs when they are offered.
“We’re going to make it clear that anyone collecting unemployment who is offered a suitable job must take the job or lose their unemployment benefits,” Biden said. “There are a few COVID-19 exceptions so that people aren’t forced to choose between their basic safety and a paycheck, but otherwise that’s the law.”
Tom Gimbel, founder and CEO of LaSalle Network, a nationwide staffing, recruiting and culture consulting firm based in Chicago, says this is the best job market he’s seen in 25 years. Gimbel says that while some people may be reluctant to return to work, the bigger problem is that there are not enough workers with the skills companies are looking for.