age cohort

 December 12th 2016 - Written by: Suzan Reagan

Very Rural Areas of New Mexico

Select Social and Economic Characteristics of New Mexico Rural Counties The US Census Bureau has identified six New Mexico counties (Catron, De Baca, Harding, Hidalgo, Mora, and Union) as completely rural. Each of these rural counties has their own unique social and economic characteristics. According to the Census Bureau’s 2015 American Communities Survey (ACS) 5 year estimates, these counties have an older population and a lower median household income compared to New Mexico. The New Mexico population density is about 17.0 people per square mile according to the 2015 ACS 5 year estimates. The completely rural counties comprise less than 1 percent of the New Mexico population and comprise about 17 percent of the New Mexico land area for a combined population density of about 0.9 people per square mile. In completely rural counties the population density ranged from a low of 0.3 in Harding County to a high of… View Full Post


 April 11th 2016 - Written by: Michael O'Donnell

The Labor Force & Demographic Shifts

In my last two blog posts, I discussed trends in labor force participation (here) and reasons why so many people are out of the labor force (here). As I noted in my most recent post, shifting demographic trends have changed the landscape of the labor force over the last decade and are likely to continue into the future – this is especially true of the oldest age cohorts. In particular, those cohorts have managed to simultaneously increase their rates of labor force participation while at the same time adding the largest number of people not in the labor force. The reason for this seeming incongruity is that population growth for this group is rapid. The population pyramid below, which is provided by the US Census Bureau, shows how the dynamics of the US population have changed through time. The pyramid, which allows you to scroll through years from 2000 to… View Full Post


 February 26th 2016 - Written by: Michael O'Donnell

Labor Force Participation Rate Trends

A data series that economists follow closely is the labor force participation rate. The labor force participation rate, which is estimated by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), is the labor force aged at least 16 years (or all appropriately aged individuals classified as employed or unemployed) as a percent of the civilian noninstitutional population aged 16 or more. Prior to the Great Recession, the US participation rate peaked at 66.4%. In other words, 66.4% of all noninstitutionalized individuals were either employed or looking for work. However, post-recession, the rate has been on a downward trajectory and has now registers 62.7%. Analysts often argue that the declining participation rate is worrisome because it may signify weakness in the economy, and specifically in the job market. The argument goes: if the economy was in a better position, an increasing proportion of the population would be either working or looking for work…. View Full Post


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