Nearly a million-and-a-half Americans could lose their jobs next year, according to a new report from the Federal Reserve, a negative turn that would put an end to President Joe Biden's favorite economic talking point.
Higher interest rates and other economic conditions spell grim news for the U.S. labor market, a panel of Federal Reserve economists concluded in a report released Wednesday. Just under 6 million Americans are now without work, but that number could reach as high as nearly 7.4 million by 2023, according to the report.
Biden often points to a low unemployment rate as evidence that his policies have fueled a strong economic recovery, even as skyrocketing inflation forces Americans to dip into their savings to pay for basic goods and services. He boasted on Tuesday at one of the nation's largest labor union events that "unemployment is near historic lows." Last month, Biden said in a Wall Street Journal op-ed that he believes the country can dramatically lower inflation without sacrificing jobs.
The Federal Reserve economists disagree. The report predicts that the U.S. unemployment rate will rise next year for the first time since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. Rising unemployment is expected to continue through 2024, according to the Fed's report, reaching heights of up to 4.5 percent. The current U.S. unemployment rate is 3.6 percent.