WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) — Despite the unprecedented challenges the world has faced in the year 2021, the U.S. has seen progress has been made when it comes to unemployment rates within the past year.
Thursday, Jan. 20, 2022, marks the one-year anniversary of the Biden-Harris Administration. On this day, Biden made a speech on the December 2021 Jobs Report. In that speech, he said:
“Today’s national unemployment rate fell below 4% to 3.9% — the sharpest one-year drop in unemployment in United States history; the first time the unemployment rate has been under 4% in the first year of a presidential term in 50 years. 3.9% unemployment rate — years faster than experts said we’d be able to do it. And we have added 6.4 million new jobs since January of last year — in one year.”
According to a news release sent out by The White House, we see a decrease in three fields related to unemployment, initial unemployment claims, unemployment rate, and the number of jobs created the year before. Included in this release was the following graphic:
According to a news release sent out by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics on Jan. 7, 2022, their statistics align with the graph sent out by The White House: the unemployment rate for January 2021 was 6.4%, with 10.2 million unemployed persons declining to 3.9% by December 2021 with 6.3 million unemployed persons.
The release also states that in February of 2020, before the COVID-19 pandemic began, the unemployment rate was 3.5%, with 5.7 million unemployed persons. We then saw a dramatic spike in unemployment by April 2020, with an unemployment rate of 14.8%. This was the highest rate observed since data collection began in 1948. Luckily, it only decreased from that point.
“Now, my focus is on keeping this recovery strong and durable,” said Biden. “I know that even as jobs and families’ incomes have recovered, families are still feeling the pinch of prices and costs.”
In Kansas, the current statistics are from November 2021, with an unemployment rate of 3.6% with 54,000 unemployed persons. Surprisingly, the unemployment rate has actually increased for Kansas in the past year by 0.2%, with last year’s unemployment rate at 3.4%.
The state also saw a significant spike in unemployment during the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. In February of 2020, the unemployment rate was 3.2%. By April, that changed to 12.6%.
“There’s been a lot of press coverage about people quitting their jobs. Well, today’s report tells you why: Americans are moving up to better jobs, with better pay, with better benefits. That’s why they’re quitting their jobs. This isn’t about workers walking away and refusing to work. It’s about workers able to take a step up to provide for themselves and their families,” said Biden.