US Employment Growth May Stall In Late 2024 According To Conference Board Report

The Conference Board’s Employment Trends Index (ETI) has a history of successfully tracking job growth trends and has declined from 112.16 in March to 111.25 in April. This decrease suggests that employment growth in the United States may stall during the second half of 2024 a concerning prospect for the nation’s economy.

“The ETI has been on a downward trajectory since its peak in March 2022 and this month signals a continuation of that trend” said Will Baltrus associate economist at The Conference Board. He added “However the Index remains historically elevated and is still above its pre-pandemic level which suggests aggregate job losses are less likely than a slowdown in employment growth.”

Several factors contributed to the ETI’s decline in April including negative changes in the percentage of respondents who found jobs hard to get the ratio of involuntary part-time workers to all part-time workers and the number of employees hired in temporary positions. The Conference Board projects that slowing consumer demand for goods and services will be the primary driver of rising unemployment in the near future.

The potential slowdown in job growth comes amid concerns about stagflation as the U.S. economy faces low GDP growth and persistent inflation. In April the unemployment rate remained at 3.9% while the number of jobs added totaled 175,000 falling short of economists’ expectations of 243,000.