October’s Employment Situation: Progress, But Long Shadow of Recession Remains

The November 4, 2016 jobs report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics will be the final report before the presidential election on November 8th. The report will cover employment and wages in October 2016.

The U.S. Economy in October 2008 Compared With Today

Between the eve of the 2008 presidential election and today, U.S. workers endured the most severe recession since the 1930s, as the economy cratered, unemployment exploded, and wages declined. We now know the recession had officially begun in December 2007, almost a year before the 2008 presidential election, but as we look ahead to where the economy is heading, we thought it would be useful to compare where we were in October 2008 and where we are today.

As the following data points reflect, on certain measures, the economy has rebounded and America’s workers face brighter job prospects than before. But many other measures show the long shadow of the Great Recession. Many of America’s workers still struggle, and the next president will need to confront serious challenges relating to the continued strength of the U.S. economy and its ability to produce good, family-sustaining jobs.


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