A Nation Of Quitters?

A record 4.3 million workers quit their jobs in August, mostly from food and retail stores. This is not a good sign for the economy, and it’s a worse sign for Christmas purchases.

Workers left their jobs at a record pace in August, with bar and restaurant employees as well as retail staff quitting in droves, the Labor Department reported.

Quits hit a new series high going back to December 2000, as 4.3 million workers left their jobs. The quits rate rose to 2.9%, an increase of 242,000 from the previous month, which saw a rate of 2.7%, according to the department’s Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey. The rate, which is measured against total employment, is the highest in a data series that goes back to December 2000.

I mentioned to Mrs. Earp that we really need to start our Christmas shopping now, because the supply lines are bad now, and they’ll be worse in December.

Quits have been seen historically as a level of confidence from workers who feel they are secure in finding employment elsewhere, though labor dynamics have changed during Covid-19 crisis. Workers have left their jobs because of health concerns and child care issues unique to the pandemic’s circumstances.

A total of 892,000 workers in the food service and accommodation industries left their jobs, while 721,000 retail workers departed along with 534,000 in health care and social assistance.

This is the inevitable result of the government paying workers to stay home. When Americans have been receiving “free money” for six months, why would they be motivated to hop back into the work force?