U.S. Unemployment At 50-Yr Low: Good News For Affordable Housing

Statue at FDR memorial of men in an unemployment line
Unemployment Line photo by Keturah Stickann is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
A statue of an unemployment line at the FDR memorial reminds us that the problem still exists for too many citizens, though a low unemployment rate helps some.

To make sense of this story’s headline, you have to be prepared to accept that housing can be made more affordable by raising the income of anyone trying to purchase housing. (Some argue that this is the only way to solve current affordable housing crises. Others suggest that for the most vulnerable, this leads to job loss and even more unemployment misery1.)

On the other hand a scarcity of labour seems to have a positive benefit, not only for general employment, but for employment of the most vulnerable.

Traditionally, many of America’s most vulnerable citizens simply cannot find employment at all, even if they are able-bodied. For example, someone with a criminal record, no matter how old or inconsequential, is traditionally shunned by employers.

Not so much any more, with the U.S. unemployment rate at a 50 year low of 3.5 per cent.

There’s much hand-wringing about this by American industry. Brow-knitting financial concern abounds. And although concern dominates throughout this article, it winds up with the potential silver lining for the most vulnerable. See in abc NEWS: US Unemployment Rate Hits A 50-Year Low Even As Hiring Slows

For a more lengthy and considered exploration of this subject, our research so far turns up in England at the paywalled Financial Times, where a four week trial membership will cost a dollar in order to read: Falling US Unemployment Draws Most Vulnerable Into Work

Footnotes

  1. Try The Hill: ‘Raise The Wage Act’ Would Drop The Hammer On The Most Vulnerable Workers