MACRO - Discouraged Workers and the Economy

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A “discouraged worker” is an individual without a job who has a desire to work; however, the worker has not actively searched for a job within the last six months, because the worker believes that there are no jobs available. Such a worker is not included in the official unemployment count.

Consider a scenario where discouraged workers are now included in the official unemployment rate during a recessionary period in the economy. Which of the three types of unemployment—frictional, structural, or cyclical—do you believe that these unemployed workers would most closely qualify for? How about during a period of economic expansion? Explain your answers and include examples.

Next, discuss and explain how including discouraged workers in the official unemployment rate would affect both the federal deficit and the national debt. Include examples to support your conclusions.

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