Nonfarm Payroll Employment vs. Trend, Pre-Covid-19

Figure 1: Nonfarm payroll employment (blue), deterministic trend estimated 2013M01-2017M01 (brown), both on log scale. Source: BLS and author’s calculations.

Figure 2: Nonfarm payroll employment (blue), stochastic trend estimated 2013M01-2017M01 (brown), both on log scale. Source: BLS and author’s calculations.

The above graphs are useful if you thought everything was hunky-dory employment-wise, even before the pandemic hit.