June 1, 2021

America’s worker shortage is real and getting worse by the day, US Chamber CEO says

(CNN Business) The US Chamber of Commerce on Monday announced a nationwide initiative to address the worker shortage in the US, calling the crisis the most critical and widespread challenge facing businesses.

The initiative, called “America Works,” aims to mobilize industry and government to “swiftly address America’s deepening worker shortage crisis.”

JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon suggested Thursday that companies are having trouble hiring in part because some Americans don’t feel like working right now.

Asked about the record high 8.1 million job openings recorded in March, the CEO said there are many causes, including challenges with reopening schools and the enhanced unemployment benefits enacted during the pandemic.”

People actually have a lot of money,” the JPMorgan (JPM) CEO said at a House Financial Services Committee hearing aimed at holding the megabanks accountable, “and they don’t particularly feel like going back to work.”

“The worker shortage is real — and it’s getting worse by the day,” US Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Suzanne Clark said.

The Chamber’s notes that the lack of workers to fill open jobs is not a new problem, but “keeping our economy going requires we fill these jobs.” The report also suggests removing barriers that prevent people from entering the workforce, getting individuals the skills they need for the open positions, and enacting sensible immigration policy.

The organization shows there were a record 8.1 million job openings in the United States in March 2021 and about half as many available workers for every open job across the country as there have been over the past 20 years.

By Alison Kosik

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