Home Economy The US economy may slow with fewer working-age people in the market

The US economy may slow with fewer working-age people in the market

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WASHINGTON — As America’s job market rebounds this summer and the need for workers intensifies, employers won’t likely have a chance to relax anytime soon. Worker shortages will likely persist for years after the fast-reopening economy shakes off its growing pains.

Consider that the number of working age people did something last year it had never done in the nation’s history: It shrank.

Estimates from the Census Bureau showed that the U.S. population ages 16 through 64 fell 0.1 percent in 2020 — a scant drop but the first decline of any kind after decades of steady increases. It reflected a sharp fall in immigration, the retirements of the vast baby boom generation and a slowing birth rate. The size of the 16-64 age group was also diminished last year by thousands of deaths from the coronavirus.

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