ArticleAnalysis: “Why Are People in Red States Dropping Out of the Labor Force?”In the article “Why ArePeople in Red States Dropping Out of the Labor Force?” the authors, SarahChaney and Sharon Nunn discuss the differences between the work forces of bluestates and red states.

  Blue states aredefined as the states that voted for Hillary Clinton in the 2016 Presidentialelection while red states are defined as states that voted for President DonaldTrump.  The article states thatalthough the labor market has grown throughout the nation, red states havelagged behind blue states comparatively. The data from this article is based on research from the Institute ofInternational Finance, which found that the percentage of people in search ofwork has declined in red states while it has increased in blue states.

This article relates to theeconomic principles of unemployment and labor force/work force.  According to our textbook, unemployment isdefined as the number of people in the economy who have not had a job for atleast a week but have actively searched for employment in the past 4weeks.  Those who are unemployed andthose who are employed are considered part of the labor force.  Those who do not have a job and have notactively searched for a job in the past 4 weeks are no longer considered partof the labor force.

 Labor force is defined as the number of acountry’s population employed in the armed forces and civilian jobs, plus thoseunemployed people who are seeking paid employment.  Unemployment rates in red states havedeclined more rapidly than unemployment rates in blue states.  This is due largely to the fact that there area greater number of individuals in red states who have chosen to completelyexit the workforce and discontinue searching for a job.  As previously stated, this means that thoseindividuals who exited the workforce are not considered unemployed and do notcontribute to the unemployment rate.  Thistrend of exiting the workforce has increased throughout the nation. Research, by the IIF, hasbeen conducted to pinpoint the cause of these trends.  Demographics and differences in economicgrowth between states have been ruled out as causes of these discrepancies.

TheIIF found that the most likely cause of the inconsistencies between red stateand blue state labor force participation is the fact that red states tend tohave more jobs that are considered slow growing such as manufacturing andretail while blue states have an abundance of jobs in the technology and lifesciences categories. In conclusion, although redstates are statistically better off in the unemployment realm in comparison toblue states, they have a much lower rate of labor force participation than bluestates do.  


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