Participating in the labour market

croaking cassandra

Looking through the various comments posted here yesterday, I noticed there had been a bit of an exchange about this chart.

BNZ labpart

It had, apparently, been used in a presentation by BNZ economist Stephen Toplis, and was reproduced at Kiwiblog.    A commenter here pointed me and others to it, with the observation

just shows what a world class economy we are running, world record immigration and look at the participation rate..amazing. That is an economy running probably as one of the best…productivity measure is meaningless

I’d have been inclined to ignore it, but others didn’t.   So I thought I’d offer a few thoughts on what to make of the labour force participation rate data.   As a reminder, the participation rate is the sum of all the people in paid work (at least an hour a week) and those actively looking (a reasonably demanding definition) for work, as…

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