Greensboro College economist: Falling unemployment rates 'good news' for working families

"GREENSBORO, N.C. -- There is "little cause for alarm" in the April employment situation report released today by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, said William K. MacReynolds, director of the N.C. Center for Economic Prosperity at Greensboro College. The national unemployment rate of 5.4 percent is the lowest rate since May 2008, down slightly from 5.5 percent in March.

The latest report "indicates a return to a steady improvement in job growth after a smallish rise in March," MacReynolds said. Job growth was strongest in professional and business services, health care and construction. Overall, 223,000 jobs were added to the U.S. economy.

The unemployment rate for adult men and women edged down to 5.0% and 4.9%, respectively. This is especially good news for working families, suggesting that consumer spending will continue its steady rise, MacReynolds said.

Over the past year, the long-term unemployed have fallen by 888,000. There has been a similar decline in the number of part-time workers who would prefer to work full-time. Both have occurred while the labor force increased by 1.6 million, indicating that job market prospects have improved overall, MacReynolds said.

 The N.C. Center for Economic Prosperity, housed in the School of Business at Greensboro College, was founded in March 2015 to gather, analyze, and comment on economic data and policies that affect North Carolinians.
MacReynolds, formerly an economist for the Federal Trade Commission, director of economic forecasting for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and a Blue Chip Economics forecaster, taught part-time at Greensboro College from 2010 until joining the full-time faculty in 2014.

Greensboro College provides a liberal-arts education grounded in the traditions of the United Methodist Church and fosters the intellectual, social, and, spiritual development of all students while supporting their individual needs.

Founded in 1838 and located near downtown Greensboro, the college enrolls about 1,150 students from 26 states, the District of Columbia and 10 nations in its undergraduate liberal-arts program and four master's degree programs. In addition to rigorous academics and a well-supported Honors program, the school features a 17-sport NCAA Division III athletic program and dozens of service and recreational opportunities."

- A Press Release

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