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A jobs agenda for the right

A quick review of the most recent labor-market data tells the story. A broader measure of unemployment includes both workers who want full-time jobs but have to settle for part-time work and workers who are marginally attached to the labor force. Defined this way, the unemployment rate in November was 13.2%, more than four percentage points higher than it was at the beginning of the Great Recession. The economy is home to 1.3 million fewer jobs today than when the Great Recession began. The three-month moving average of employment gains is currently 193,000 jobs per month. At that rate, the Brookings Institution’s Hamilton Project calculates that the jobs gap will not close until more than five years from now.