The U.S. unemployment rate may not return to the more than half-century lows recorded under former President Donald Trump, according to Esther George, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.
The national unemployment rate is currently at 5.4%, a pandemic-era low, but remains elevated from the 3.5% that was reached under Trump. Many workers remain on the sidelines due to generous unemployment benefits, the closing of schools and day care, and fears over the virus.
“I’m not necessarily wedded to saying a pre-pandemic number will represent full employment because one of the things we know is that the pandemic shock could have had real impacts on the way we work,” George told FOX Business’ Edward Lawrence.
The Federal Reserve’s dual mandate calls for the central bank to achieve maximum employment and price stability. However, the central bank last year said it would allow inflation to run above its 2% target “for some time” in order to achieve its employment objective.