The number of available jobs since May has outnumbered Americans looking for work. One factor is a mismatch between where people want to work and which industries are hiring.
The hardest-hit industries have yet to recover to prepandemic levels, when 63% of Americans were in the labor force. In July, there were 5.7 million fewer jobs, on a seasonally adjusted basis, than there were in February 2020, according to Labor Department data.
The number of people trying to get back into the workforce has rebounded since the early days of the pandemic. The share of adults working or looking for a job has increased slightly from a low of 60.2% in April of last year to 61.7% in July.