What Percentage of the US Population is in the Labor Force?

The United States has seen three major stages of increasing female participation in the workforce. In the late 19th century and until the 1920s, very few women were employed. These women typically worked in the textile manufacturing industry or as domestic workers, and often withdrew from the workforce when they married, unless their family needed two incomes. From 1930 to 1950, female participation in the labor force increased due to an increase in demand for office workers, the participation of women in the high school movement, and electrification, which reduced time spent on household chores.

During the 1950s and 1970s, most women had secondary incomes and worked primarily as secretaries, teachers, nurses, and librarians (pink collar jobs).In 1979, women had more options and opportunities to earn a higher degree than a high school diploma. This allowed them to invest and advance their careers while in a relationship. The introduction of new contraceptive technology, birth control pills, and the tightening of laws on coming of age also gave women more control over their fertility and timing of their fertility. This gave them the flexibility to choose to invest and advance their careers without running the risk of frustrating their professional choices. The Equal Pay Act of 1963 was also a major factor in increasing female participation in the American workforce.

This legislation reduced sex discrimination and encouraged more women to enter the labor market by receiving fair pay to help raise their children. The Civil Rights Act (1964) and Title IX (1972) were also passed; all of these policies together supported the increase in the number of women (LFP). The Equal Pay Act protects both men and women against discrimination on the basis of sex in the payment of wages. According to the Congressional Research Service, since 1979, the gap between women and men has been smaller: the cumulative percentage change in women's real wages increased by 9.6% (10th percentile), while men decreased by -7.7%. However, with this incredible increase, the real wage of women was still lower than that of men.

This could be explained by a different starting point. More than 157 million Americans are part of the U. S. UU. The workforce, and many of them (but not all) will be spending Labor Day weekend away from their desks, assembly lines and box counters.

According to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), only 2.2% of adults with a bachelor's degree or higher were unemployed in July 2020, compared to 3.6% of adults with only a high school diploma and 5.1% of adults who did not graduate from high school. The labor force participation rate (LFPR) is the ratio between the labor force and the total size of its cohort (national population of the same age range). The workforce is composed of employed people plus unemployed people. Demographic changes such as an aging population can lead to a secular increase in outflows from the labor force.

Marlene Barcelo
Marlene Barcelo

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