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Will the USA's Labor Force Participation Rate be lower in 2023 than in 2018?

The labor force participation rate (LFPR) is the ratio between the labor force and the overall size of their cohort. It is sometimes opposed to the unemployment rate, since it includes people who for various reasons are not in the job market.

It hovered around 59% until the late 1960's, then grew as high as 67% in 2000 before shrinking back to 63% in recent years. It seems to be roughly stable since 2014. (graph and data here).

This question asks in which direction the LFPR will have changed in 2024 compared to 2018, as measured by the United States Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics, series ID LNS11300000. The quantities considered are the 12-month averages for 2018 and 2023.


  • positive if the average LFPR for 2023 is lower than the average LFPR for 2018
  • negative if the average LFPR for 2023 is higher than the average LFPR for 2018
  • ambiguous if they are the same to ( percentage points)
  • ambiguous if the BLS fails to publish LFPR data for any month in 2024 (including if it does not exist any more)

My thanks to Jgalt and Uncle Jeff for inspiring this question.


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