The labor force is the sum of employed and unemployed workers in a country. This includes full-time, part-time and self-employed workers who earn hourly wages, salaries, or receive contract pay. Anyone over the age of 16 who is employed and not retired is included in the total workforce. Only unemployed workers who are actively looking for work are included in the count, while discouraged workers are excluded.
Data on working hours, earnings and demographic characteristics are also available. Discouraged workers are a subgroup of people marginally linked to the workforce, while marginalized people are those who are not part of the workforce, want to work, and have sought work at some point in the previous 12 months but were not counted as unemployed because they had not looked for work in the 4 weeks prior to the survey. The labor force participation rate is the labor force as a percentage of the non-institutional civilian population. Data is also available by demographic characteristics.
Every August, information is released on the participation of young people aged 16 to 24 in the workforce from April to July. The unemployment rate represents the number of unemployed as a percentage of the labor force. Unemployment data is also available by demographic characteristics. The Bureau of Labor Statistics measures the labor force participation rate according to a monthly household survey conducted by the U. S.
The size of the workforce depends not only on the number of adults, but also on how likely they are to feel they can get a job. The workforce shrinks during times of economic recession because people tend to have a more negative outlook on their chances of getting a job during these periods. The labor force participation rate is an important metric to be used when analyzing data on employment and unemployment, since it measures the number of people actively seeking employment, as well as those currently employed. The participation rate of women in the labor force almost doubled, from 32% to 60% in the 50 years between 1948 and 1998. To be considered part of the workforce, you must be available, willing to work, and have recently sought work. According to the Federal Reserve, the proportion of people of working age (25 to 54 years old) in the labor force peaked at 72% in 1995 and declined to 63.7% over the next 25 years. This information is not available in the monthly basic labor force survey, which is the source of national unemployment estimates.