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There is a disconcerting element to estimating the number of new jobs created each month in the United States. Not because the number is difficult to forecast, but rather that there is a perpetual sense of pessimism about the prospects for better job growth in the future.
And as an economist who studies the composition of the labor force and is familiar with how technology can displace jobs, I am frightened by what I see.
Since the economic peak just before the recession, the US production of goods and services has grown by 5 percent, yet total employment remains below prerecession levels, with many of these jobs lost to technology. A look at the Labor Department’s statistics suggests we should expect more of the same.
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