Labor Supply and Demand

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Labor Supply and Demand|
Patricia Shackles
Terry R. Blankenship, MBA, CBB|

The great depression was a 10-year long event that started with the stock market crash in 1929. During the great depression, several people were taking their money out of the banks to use because of the lack of jobs and lower wages. The great depression mainly affected the blue-collar sector of workers and their families the hardest. The layoff level in all of the factories was at a high rate Labor demand went down and unemployment levels went up. Most factories in the U.S. closed since commodities could not be sold and companies could not afford to make them. People struggled to make ends meet in the meager job market. The great depression was a very severe time and the main problems were that employers were not hiring because their business were not doing good. Businesses like factories were not hiring workers because they saw no need to hire people to operate their machines if there were no goods being bought. No goods were being bought in the markets because there was such a high unemployment rate and people just did not have the money to buy the goods that these companies were manufacturing. At the depths of the Depression, about one-third of the American work force was unemployed, a staggering figures for a country that, in the decade before, had enjoyed full employment. A labor market analysis of the Great Depression finds that many workers were unemployed for much longer than one year. Of those fortunate to have jobs, many experienced cutbacks in hours (i.e., involuntary part-time employment). Men typically were more adversely affected than women were. This was especially true for older and black men at a time when age- and race-based job discrimination was not unlawful and when occupational shifts in labor demand were operating against them. Higher-skilled workers fared better than lower-skilled workers did.

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