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Millions Of Low Paying “Jobs” are Available, but Most Americans Can’t Afford to Take Them

By Michael Snyder | Activist Post

There are more job openings in the United States than ever before, but the vast majority of the available “jobs” pay so little that most Americans don’t want them.  If working extremely long hours for some employer is not even going to lift you out of poverty, then you are probably better off taking whatever government assistance that you can get until a decent paying job eventually comes along.  For example, if you get a job that pays 10 dollars an hour and you work full-time hours every week, you will earn somewhere around $1,600 a month before taxes.  Needless to say, you can’t survive in most U.S. cities on $1,600 a month these days.  It would have been tough to make it on $1,600 a month before the pandemic, but now we are in a highly inflationary environment.  Housing costs are absolutely skyrocketing, health insurance premiums are at extremely ridiculous levels and food prices have been rising aggressively.  The higher the cost of living gets, the less attractive low-paying jobs are going to become.

Having said that, it is still good news that the number of job openings is sitting at a record high right now…

Job openings in the U.S. rose slightly in May to a record 9.21 million, reflecting an insatiable demand for labor as the economy fully reopens and businesses scramble to keep up with soaring sales for their goods and services.

The number of available jobs has set a record for three straight months. Job openings had fallen to as low as 4.6 million last year after the coronavirus pandemic briefly shut down much of the economy.

Having lots of jobs available is better than not having a lot of jobs available, but of course, the vast majority of those “jobs” could not support a middle-class lifestyle for an average American family.

Some have been using the term “labor shortage” to describe what is going on out there, but in reality, what we are really facing is a shortage of jobs that people are actually willing to work.

Even though there are supposedly so many “jobs” available at this moment, the unemployment rate in this country actually went up last month…

“There’s simply no labor shortage when you’re talking about finding house cleaners for a hotel — there is a shortage of workers who want to work at what you’re offering,” said Sylvia Allegretto, a UC Berkeley labor economist. She said the country is experiencing a “wage and benefits shortage.”

A labor shortage implies there aren’t enough available workers to fill open jobs, but this is not the case nationally, or in California. National unemployment in June was 5.9%, up from 5.8% in May, in part because the number of people looking for jobs grew, according to data from the Labor Department on Friday. California’s unemployment is tracking higher, at 7.9% in May.

Of course, it doesn’t help that being unemployed pays quite handsomely in many states these days.

If you can make more money doing nothing, it simply doesn’t make sense to work.

In order to encourage more people to work, many large chains in the restaurant industry are now raising wages substantially

Job openings in the accommodation and food services sector increased from 1.16 million in April to 1.25 million in May.

To entice workers to stay — and to hire more people — restaurants have been raising wages. Darden Restaurants (DRI), which owns Olive Garden, announced in March that it is hiking pay. McDonald’s (MCD), too, announced wage hikes for employees at corporate-owned stores in May. Others have done the same.

Large corporate chains can do this because they have deep pockets.

But millions of small businesses all over the country that deeply struggled during the pandemic are not in the same position.

Ultimately, a lot of small business owners find themselves doing more and more of the work themselves because they simply can’t find enough people to work for the wages that they are offering.  Here is just one example

Jarvis Young, who owns a Papa John’s in Los Angeles with his wife, is struggling to staff up at all levels, from managers to delivery drivers. He employs 16 workers and said he needs closer to 23.

He has started borrowing employees from other Papa John’s franchises to keep up with demand. Until they hire one, his wife is acting as the general manager. The two of them sometimes deliver pizzas — not quite what they envisioned for themselves as franchise owners. “At the end of the day, this is our business,” he said.

Today, there are tens of millions of Americans that are considered to be among the “working poor”, and that number is growing with each passing day.

The cost of living is rising far faster than our paychecks are, and an increasing number of Americans are not even able to afford the basics.

For instance, everyone needs a place to live.  Unfortunately, home prices have surged so dramatically this year that the percentage of Americans that say that it is a “bad time to buy a home” has risen to the highest level ever recorded

The percentage who said that it was a “bad time to buy a home” spiked over the past three months from record to record and in June hit 64%. Consumers cited home prices as the predominant reason.

A record low 32% of the respondents said that it was still a good time to buy a home, while the percentage of fence-sitters who didn’t know dropped to 4%.

And just trying to buy enough food to eat is becoming a challenge for a lot of people.

When I went to the grocery store this week, I was stunned to see how high prices had become.  Of course, some manufacturers are trying to hide price increases by shrinking the sizes of their packages, and this is something that NPR did an article on the other day

A couple of weeks ago, Edgar Dworsky walked into a Stop & Shop grocery store in Somerville, Mass., like a detective entering a murder scene.

He stepped into the cereal aisle, where he hoped to find the smoking gun. He scanned the shelves. Oh no, he thought. He was too late. The store had already replaced old General Mills cereal boxes — such as Cheerios and Cocoa Puffs — with newer ones. It was as though the suspect’s fingerprints had been wiped clean.

But Dworsky’s story didn’t end there.  He decided to check out the back of the store, and it was there that he discovered what he was searching for...

Then Dworsky headed toward the back of the store. Sure enough, old boxes of Cocoa Puffs and Apple Cinnamon Cheerios were stacked at the end of one of the aisles. He grabbed an old box of Cocoa Puffs and put it side by side with the new one. Aha! The tip he had received was right on the money. General Mills had downsized the contents of its “family size” boxes from 19.3 ounces to 18.1 ounces.

Dworsky went to the checkout aisle, and both boxes — gasp! — were the same price. It was an open-and-shut case: General Mills is yet another perpetrator of “shrinkflation.”

As I discussed a few days ago, we are going to be in a high inflation environment for the foreseeable future.

That means that low-paying jobs will just become less and less attractive.

So employers can boast that they have as many “job openings” as they want, but if wage growth continues to lag way behind the real rate of inflation most of those jobs will continue to remain empty.

***Michael’s new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available in paperback and for the Kindle on Amazon.***

About the Author: My name is Michael Snyder and my brand new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available on Amazon.com.  In addition to my new book, I have written four others that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned)  By purchasing the books you help to support the work that my wife and I are doing, and by giving it to others you help to multiply the impact that we are having on people all over the globe.  I have published thousands of articles on The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream, and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe.  I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but I also ask that they include this “About the Author” section with each article.  The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial, or health decisions.  I encourage you to follow me on social media on FacebookTwitter, and Parler, and anyway that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with as many people as we possibly can.




Brace Yourselves for the Most Dramatic Shift in the Standard of Living in All of U.S. History

By Michael Snyder | Activist Post

They are assuring us that we don’t have to be concerned about “inflation” because they have everything under control.  Do you believe them?  The value of the U.S. dollar has been steadily declining for a long time, and most Americans have grown accustomed to having the cost of living rise at a faster pace than their paychecks do.  But over the past 12 months, an enormous paradigm shift has begun.  Instead of devaluing our currency a little bit at a time, now our leaders are going “full Weimar”.  Our money supply is growing at an exponential rate, and this is becoming a major national crisis.

As I pointed out yesterday, it took from the founding of our county all the way to 2020 for M1 to reach 4 trillion dollars.  But then from the start of the pandemic to today, M1 has gone from 4 trillion dollars to 18 trillion dollars.  To call that “economic malpractice” would be way too kind.  The truth is that it is complete and utter lunacy, and we are all going to literally pay the price for such madness.

Sadly, inflation is already starting to show up in a major way all throughout our economy.

For example, most Americans have noticed that the price of gasoline has really started to shoot up over the last several weeks

Gas prices have been increasing at the pump for the past few weeks, reaching a national average of $2.77 a gallon as of Monday, which is 39 cents higher than the same time in 2020, according to AAA.

A lot of people are alarmed by this, but the Federal Reserve insists that this is completely normal.

Meanwhile, the price of agricultural commodities has risen by 50 percent over the past year…

The price of agricultural commodities traded on the global stage has shot up by 50 percent since the middle of 2020, according to economists at Rabobank.

In a new report, the bank pins the lift in the price of wheat, corn, soy, sugar, and a range of other commodities on the northern La Niña, a weakening US currency, market speculators, and rising demand from importing nations.

As those prices are passed along to the consumer, you will be paying more for groceries at your local supermarket, but authorities assure us that prices will stabilize once the economy returns to “normal”.

The good news is that at least the price of food is not rising as fast as the price of lumber is

Lumber prices have increased more than 180 percent since last spring, and this price spike has caused the price of an average new single-family home to increase by $24,386 since April 17, 2020, according to the NAHB standard estimates of lumber used to build the average home.

Now that is some serious inflation!

There are so many people who have had to put their plans to build a home on hold in recent months because the price of lumber has gotten so ridiculously high.

But the experts at the Fed insist that those that are warning of hyperinflation just have wild imaginations.

Over the course of the past year, our leaders have pumped trillions and trillions and trillions of dollars into the system, and all of that money has to go somewhere.

In such a highly inflationary environment, this sort of a thing can happen

A digital collage by American artist Beeple which exists only as a JPG file sold Thursday for a record $69.3 million at Christie’s, fetching more money than physical works by many better-known artists.

‘Everydays: The First 5,000 Days’ became the most expensive ever ‘non-fungible token’ (NFT) – a collectible digital asset that uses blockchain technology to turn virtual work into a unique item – after being listed at the start of the two-week auction for only $100.

The U.S. dollar is being transformed into “toilet paper money”, and we are rapidly approaching the point of no return.

At least if our paychecks were rising as fast as the cost of living was, American families would be able to keep up with the escalating prices.

But of course, that is not happening, and more Americans are falling out of the middle class with each passing day.

In fact, vast numbers of formerly middle-class Americans no longer have jobs at all.  Last week another 712,000 Americans filed new claims for unemployment benefits, and the number of claims continues to hover around “four times the typical pre-crisis level”

Weekly jobless claims have remained stubbornly high for months, hovering around four times the typical pre-crisis level, although it’s well below the peak of almost 7 million that was reached when stay-at-home orders were first issued a year ago in March.

There are roughly 10 million fewer jobs than there were last year in February before the crisis began.

This is not what an “economic recovery” looks like.

The truth is that the U.S. economy is broken, and the only solution our leaders have is to print, borrow and spend even more money.

Now Biden and his minions are about to pump another 1.9 trillion dollars into the system.

Do you think that will make the inflation crisis better or do you think that it will make it worse?

You don’t need to answer, because the answer is self-evident.

As prices soar into the stratosphere, life is going to become increasingly difficult for most Americans.

If your income does not rise as fast as prices are going up, your standard of living will go down.

Of course, you will be far from alone.  The vast majority of Americans are about to experience a dramatic shift in the standard of living, and most of the population doesn’t even realize what is happening.

All they know is that more government checks are on the way, and most of them are absolutely thrilled about that.

But all of this printing, borrowing, and spending has put us on a path to national financial suicide.

As we continue to recklessly destroy the value of our currency, other nations will begin to realize that a move to a different reserve currency is needed.

And once the U.S. dollar is no longer the reserve currency of the world, there will never be any going back to the “good old days”.

We are so close to the economic endgame, and the word “collapse” is not nearly strong enough to describe what is eventually going to happen to us.

About the Author: My name is Michael Snyder and my brand new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available on Amazon.com.  In addition to my new book, I have written four others that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned)  By purchasing the books you help to support the work that my wife and I are doing, and by giving it to others you help to multiply the impact that we are having on people all over the globe.  I have published thousands of articles on The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream, and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe.  I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but I also ask that they include this “About the Author” section with each article.  The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial, or health decisions.  I encourage you to follow me on social media on FacebookTwitter, and Parler, and anyway that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with as many people as we possibly can.




Three Crazy Things We Now Accept As “Normal” For The Economy

By Charles Hugh Smith | Activist Post

How can central banks “retrain” participants while maintaining their extreme policies of stimulus?

Humans habituate very easily to new circumstances, even extreme ones. What we accept as “normal” now may have been considered bizarre, extreme or unstable a few short years ago.

Three economic examples come to mind:

1. Near-zero interest rates. If someone had announced to a room of economists and financial journalists in 2006 that interest rates would be near-zero for the foreseeable future, few would have considered it possible or healthy. Yet now the Federal Reserve and other central banks have kept interest rates/bond yields near-zero for almost nine years.

The Fed has raised rates a mere .75% in three cautious baby-steps, clearly fearful of collapsing the “recovery.”

What would happen if mortgages returned to their previously “normal” level around 7% from the current 4%? What would happen to auto sales if people with average credit had to pay more than 0% or 1% for a auto loan?

Those in charge of setting rates and yields are clearly fearful that “normalized” interest rates would kill the recovery and the stock bubble.

2. Massive money-creation hasn’t generated inflation. In classic economics, massive money-printing (injecting trillions of dollars, yuan, yen and euros into the financial system) would be expected to spark inflation.

As many of us have observed, “official” inflation of less than 2% does not align with “real-world” inflation in big-ticket items such as rent, healthcare and college tuition/fees. A more realistic inflation rate is 7%-8% annually, especially in the higher-cost regions of the US.

But setting that aside, there is a puzzling asymmetry between low official inflation and the unprecedented expansion of money supply, debt and monetary stimulus (credit and liquidity). To date, most of this new money appears to be inflating assets rather than the real world. But can this asymmetry continue for another 9 years?

3. Stock markets are soaring but sales and profits are stagnant. Everyone knows central banks are still pumping billions of dollars per month into the financial system, and this (coupled with central bank purchases of stocks and bonds) has been pushing stocks sharply higher for the past 9 years, with only a few hiccups along the way.

This is pushing valuations out of alignment with traditional metrics of valuing assets such as sales and profits–a process known as “price discovery.” In essence, traders and investors have habituated to central banks driving private-sector markets higher, not because the assets are generating more value or profits. but simply as a function of centralized money creation and asset purchases.

All of these extremes generate mal-investment, diminishing returns and perverse incentives for ramping up unproductive and risky speculation, leverage and debt. Yet the central banks have trapped themselves in this risky trajectory because they’ve pushed the accelerator to the floorboard for 9 years. Any extreme held in place for 9 years has long slipped from “temporary” to permanent.

Participants have now habituated fully to central banks extreme stimulus of financial markets, and in a sense they’ve forgotten how to price assets based on real-world private-sector measures.

How can central banks “retrain” participants while maintaining their extreme policies of stimulus? The only possible answer is: they can’t.

This essay was drawn from Musings Report 2018:1. The Musings Reports are emailed weekly to contributors, subscribers and patrons. Thank you for your financial support of my work.

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