Great German, Small American Employment Progress
Meanwhile, employment is picking up in the U.S. as well, with the household survey showing a 291,000 gain (slightly more than 0.2%) and the payroll survey showing a 216,000 gain (slightly less than 0.2%). However, unlike in Germany, the employment to population ratio is despite the gain in the most recent month actually slightly below (58.5% versus 58.6%) year ago levels. The alleged drop in unemployment during the latest year thus simply reflects a lower labor force participation. And because the employment to population ratio fell so much during the slump, it is unlike in Germany significantly below 2007 levels.
With both the average work week and nominal average hourly earnings unchanged, real wages likely also fell.