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A record number of Americans are quitting their jobs

A record 4.3 million people quit their jobs in August, evidence of the considerable leverage workers have in today's economy. The number of workers who quit rose by 242,000 from July as more Americans demanded higher pay, better working conditions and more flexible arrangements.

About 2.9% of the workforce quit in August, up from 2.7% in July, according to the Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) report, released Tuesday. That marks the highest quit rate since the report began in late 2000.

"This is what happens after great wars or depressions," Brusuelas said. "It's hard to spot while you're in it, but we've gone through a shock that has elicited an unexpected change upon the population. And it will take some time to sort through."

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by Anonymousreply 42October 14, 2021 12:15 PM

In the long run, such a workforce transformation will be a positive thing, allowing more people to find satisfaction in their careers and for businesses to have happier employees. And it can allow more workers to make a living wage and contribute to the broader economy, easing the alarming gap between rich and poor.

by Anonymousreply 1October 13, 2021 1:15 AM

[quote] A record 4.3 million people quit their jobs in August…

… and half of them went on welfare.

by Anonymousreply 2October 13, 2021 1:17 AM

I was going to quit my job in August to try to find something more fulfilling. When I told my boss, I was given a promotion and significant raise.

by Anonymousreply 3October 13, 2021 1:19 AM

I quit my job in May. The boss was a neurotic bitch and I lived and worked as if I owned the business. I grew to hate it, especially after my time off during the Covid lockdown.

Yesterday on Columbus Day I went out to a farm to go to a corn maze with friends. I hadn’t had Columbus Day off in at least 11 years. This new job I work a half day on Saturday, Sunday off and paid holidays. It’s so refreshing to have a life.

by Anonymousreply 4October 13, 2021 1:34 AM

Cut off all unemployment benefits to anyone th as t quits their job!

by Anonymousreply 5October 13, 2021 1:36 AM

You can’t collect unemployment if you quit your job.

by Anonymousreply 6October 13, 2021 1:37 AM

Welfare queens!

by Anonymousreply 7October 13, 2021 1:39 AM

God R2 is so fucking stupid.

by Anonymousreply 8October 13, 2021 5:07 AM

The supplemental unemployment benefits ended on Sept 4. If you're still collecting now it's because you got laid off and deserve the benefits.

The reason people are quitting their jobs is because they were off during Covid and had a chance to examine their lives and decided to say NO to an unfulfilling job. The lockdown (even those working from home) gave people a chance to reflect, and many decided their job was not worth it. Yes, eventually these people will have to get a job, but for now, they have had enough. Many people are retiring early.

Also, the savings of the average American went up significantly in the past couple of years due to Covid because nobody did anything...no going out to dinner, no vacations, not much money spent on gas or car insurance, dry cleaning reductions, no going to lunch, etc. Ultimately, people were able to save a lot of their discretionary income, which now has given them a cushion to take a chance at not working.

So this talk about lazy people collecting unemployment, going on welfare, etc., are not valid reasons and don't explain people quitting their jobs. It turns out that for the most part, people are looking for something more fulfilling and are taking a chance on quitting to find something they enjoy.

by Anonymousreply 9October 13, 2021 5:37 AM

Congratulations [R4]. It's heartennig for me to hear somebody doing what you did. I did it nine years ago and never looked back.

by Anonymousreply 10October 13, 2021 7:19 AM

Yes, dear, now you get to bother us with your pointless bitchery R10

by Anonymousreply 11October 13, 2021 8:15 AM

While I applaud those that scrimped and saved and were prudent about it, I’m afraid a LOT of people are living right on the edge, have lined up some scammy way of making money to live off of temporarily, but aren’t paying back into the system. Living off the grid threatens the stability of local and state funding for safety nets- that these people will need to rely on when they have completely exhausted their current means. There’s also a lot of back rent that’s coming up due- many think the government will bail them out twice.

Buttressed by the unemployment and PPP funds, a lot of uneducated people started their own business or were able to keep an ailing one afloat. An entire gig and investment economy arose (Bitcoin) to capitalize on them and separate them from their newfound cash. Independent contractors do not have the same protections as employees do. I also think we’re not seeing the true extent of how serious this is because people will do anything rather than admit failure, including living with parents or doubling up with family members, we’re seeing it in our complex. Six people living in a 2 bedroom.

Raising the minimum wage to $15 negates the “worthiness” of jobs that already pay $15 and it’s a race to to bottom for companies to try to raise all wages fairly. They’ll cut staff if forced to.

That said, I welcome change.

by Anonymousreply 12October 13, 2021 9:00 AM

A good friend of mine retired in his 30's, but recently re-entered the workforce. He doesn't need the money, but opportunities are great for people with skills.

by Anonymousreply 13October 13, 2021 9:39 AM

Curious to see some shreds of evidence of the shadow economy you’ve outlined, R12. And “(Bitcoin)” is not an answer. Nor is “my friend’s sister’s husband heard on OAN that somebody did something”.

by Anonymousreply 14October 13, 2021 10:17 AM

[quote]Yes, dear, now you get to bother us with your pointless bitchery [R10]

Why should r10 bother? You seem eminently capable of filling that niche.

At least the "pointless" part.

by Anonymousreply 15October 13, 2021 10:21 AM

[Quote] n the long run, such a workforce transformation will be a positive thing, allowing more people to find satisfaction in their careers and for businesses to have happier employees. And it can allow more workers to make a living wage and contribute to the broader economy, easing the alarming gap between rich and poor.


by Anonymousreply 16October 13, 2021 11:08 AM

R14, hairdresser here-

I’m seeing colleagues that owned high end salons forced to close, sell, or downsize businesses once PPP has been exhausted because they aren’t seeing a rebound of expensive services- nor are employees willing to come back onto the payroll. Their former employees are instead going to people’s houses and charging them $300 cash. While this has always existed to one degree or another or is great short term for the workers, it’s seriously disrupting my industry by creating off book revenue and an unpredictability for future salons to make sales projections, hire confidently or secure loans to grow or offer dependable income.

There’s been a drastic attitude of “Be Your Own Boss” companies like salon suites that capitalize on it by locking entrepreneurs into prohibitive multi year leases, drafting rent automatically out of accounts, and yes, skirting laws by allowing back rent renters to double up. These stylists aren’t making that much more on their own after taxes, fees and rent unless they are skirting taxes. It’s all an illusion.

I’m not saying this attitude is wrong. Risk comes with entrepreneurship. I’m saying there is NO backup plan if they fail.

by Anonymousreply 17October 13, 2021 12:59 PM

How is everyone quitting their jobs? I would never quit my job without another one already lined up (MARY!!! But seriously).

Seems like you would have to have wealthy parents or a shit ton of savings to just up and quit your job because you don’t like it.

by Anonymousreply 18October 13, 2021 1:08 PM

How are people earning money? I’m referring to the younger generation who would typically be waiting tables or working retail , working their way through college. What are all the would be entry level employees doing to earn needed cash to buy their first car or rent their first apartment?

by Anonymousreply 19October 13, 2021 1:19 PM

They're living with their parents, r19 and fewer young people are buying cars these days anyway.

by Anonymousreply 20October 13, 2021 1:42 PM

[bold]Robert Reich: Is America experiencing an unofficial general strike?[/bold]

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by Anonymousreply 21October 13, 2021 1:45 PM

See also....

[quote] From the 1340s onwards, the catastrophic plague, known as the Black Death, had swept through England, killing between a third and half of the population. These huge death tolls led to a shortage of labour, and then to major changes in the social structure as agricultural workers were able to demand better treatment and higher wages from their landlords.

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by Anonymousreply 22October 13, 2021 1:50 PM

Great points, r14. This off-book, own-boss, gig economy leads to high levels of job and income precariousness, however, which people won't see the full impact of until a few years have passed. It also fucks up things like social security insurance and pensions.

Yes, some highly-skilled people will be able to secure better pay and conditions (for a while), but what about those who aren't highly skilled? Even worse, the pandemic has also led to a shift in automation - many jobs will be lost and new ones not created in their place. If I didn't already work or I didn't need to work immediately right now, I would make sure I did get a job so I can pay for a pension and keep myself practiced at doing a job. The idea that people can take 1-2 years off and then waltz into a great job is ludicrous.

by Anonymousreply 23October 13, 2021 1:53 PM

But that's not the full story of what's happening today, r22. There has in fact been huge support from governments and employers over the pandemic, to provide people with an income and to prevent them from losing their jobs. Governments have pumped trillions into the economy to ensure that businesses and jobs don't collapse. People were paid directly by the government to stay in a job even though their company was closed and they were sitting at home. To try to paint today's situation as one of greedy bosses and right-wing governments is erroneous.

R21, that article is completely inapplicable to Europe. What Europe and the US and probably everywhere are going to see, however, is rising inflation, which will wipe out those wage rises.

by Anonymousreply 24October 13, 2021 2:02 PM

In covid, people with kids feel very uneasy going out to work and back when kid can't get vaccinated yet.

This is made worse by slave wages and a work day created as if there's one parent at work and one at home taking care of kids, the house, and meals.

by Anonymousreply 25October 13, 2021 2:05 PM

[quote] What Europe and the US and probably everywhere are going to see, however, is rising inflation, which will wipe out those wage rises.

Everyone expects inflation as people are suddenly reawakening the economy after over a year of lockdown. No one expects the inflation to last particularly long.

by Anonymousreply 26October 13, 2021 2:07 PM

R21, very astute article

by Anonymousreply 27October 13, 2021 2:08 PM

[quote]Many said their employers treated them badly, harassed them, and did not respect them.

That's from the article R21 posted. I don't think the way employees get treated is mentioned enough in articles about why positions aren't getting filled. Toxic workplaces are increasingly common. You can't complain about your boss or co-workers for fear of retribution. You might not get a promotion, raise, or recommendation if you do. Even worse, you might get fired. People in service industries, especially dining and retail, have been subject to increasing bad behavior and abuse from customers. A lot of people have had enough and don't want to deal with it anymore.

by Anonymousreply 28October 13, 2021 2:27 PM

Lazy asses that aren't working or even looking for work will get their comeuppance sooner or later.

by Anonymousreply 29October 14, 2021 3:08 AM

As a trans Asian I tried to wait tables but people made fun of my kimono and said I was trying to “pass”. They didn’t accept me or my journey out of Caucasia so I quit.

by Anonymousreply 30October 14, 2021 3:18 AM

“ because they aren’t seeing a rebound of expensive services-”

Whaaat? Where do you live? My best friend owns a small, reputable salon in Brooklyn and she is out of control busy. Higher end services cater to affluent people, of which there are more than ever. Strange that your friends business is not raking it in.

by Anonymousreply 31October 14, 2021 3:26 AM

[quote]Toxic workplaces are increasingly common. You can't complain about your boss or co-workers for fear of retribution. You might not get a promotion, raise, or recommendation if you do. Even worse, you might get fired.

Yeah, you're expected to just be grateful to have a job and live in fear of losing your healthcare.

by Anonymousreply 32October 14, 2021 3:31 AM

A lot of companies are finally getting what they deserve, after a decade of treating employees like shit using the Great Recession (and the fear it created) as an excuse.

by Anonymousreply 33October 14, 2021 3:44 AM

I'll admit it. I moved back to my parents' house when COVID hit. I was working entertainment in LA and everything shut down. I didn't see another way. Anyway. I actually quit my new job in June. Going into real estate now.

by Anonymousreply 34October 14, 2021 4:17 AM

I think these are elected Republicans who are quitters. They do not want to stand up to Maga and Qanon.

by Anonymousreply 35October 14, 2021 4:29 AM

[quote]The idea that people can take 1-2 years off and then waltz into a great job is ludicrous.

r23 Not really. People in "highly skilled" jobs who make enough to save up go 1 year between jobs, "freelance", and then waltz into another great job all the time. Now that the playing field is setup for everyone to do that, even your hairdresser, people all of a sudden have a problem. Post Great Recession the US job market has been volatile; you may be without work for extended periods before you find something solid. People have wizened up and now and work the system in their favor, and will continue to do so until corporations start offering real living wages.

by Anonymousreply 36October 14, 2021 7:08 AM


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by Anonymousreply 37October 14, 2021 7:20 AM

R31, it’s the smaller flexible shops that are doing well, the larger prestigious shops are not. My previous shop was on 5th Ave. staffed with over 20 stylists and the owner lost the shop because he needed at least half his staff to come back to cover the expensive rent. He works by himself in an upper East side townhouse now. My other friend is a top celeb stylist in Beverly Hills and cannot for the life of her staff her shop properly and has to turn business away because it’s just her and another girl. Another celeb colorist built a luxury salon and had to sell it last month because she cannot find high end stylists willing to work out in New Jersey.

by Anonymousreply 38October 14, 2021 8:04 AM

R19 Only Fans, Chatterbate . . .work from home and make good money

by Anonymousreply 39October 14, 2021 8:43 AM

Not everyone is high skilled, r36. What is high skilled, anyway? Especially when it comes to freelancers. Just take the example of hair stylists that people have mentioned. If you take too much time off, you start to lose your client base.

If you mean employees, there's a big difference between a small number taking up to a year off and a huge trend in people taking two years off. Staff will have a bit extra leverage for a while, but that will start to disappear once all those who are taking their time in getting back to work actually get back to work. They will also have to start competing with the huge waves of new graduates, who won't be so insistent about working from home or demanding wage rises.

by Anonymousreply 40October 14, 2021 9:21 AM

To add r36, the people who have have great jobs and can take up to a year off are unlikely to be the ones not being paid a living wage by corporations. It's also hard to freelance if you do the type of job that entails working for a corporation. People who are in jobs that don't pay a living wage are also going to find it hard to freelance

by Anonymousreply 41October 14, 2021 9:26 AM

By most metrics I make a lot of money freelancing - I’m a copywriter/strategist on the tech side - and let me tell you, it’s ALWAYS a hustle. My market is flooded and if I go skipping away for a year, others will fill my place in a heartbeat.

The only highly skilled people I know who can maybe do the year off thing are programmers/developers. But they really don’t do anything like that … a lot of them have families or financial goals. More than a few of the younger ones are working their asses off now so they can retire at 50 or so.

by Anonymousreply 42October 14, 2021 12:15 PM
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