Unemployment (or joblessness) occurs when people are without work and actively seeking work. The unemployment rate is a measure of the prevalence of unemployment and it is calculated as a percentage by dividing the number of unemployed individuals by all individuals currently in the labor force. During periods of recession, an economy usually experiences a relatively high unemployment rate.
- When a great many people are unable to find work, unemployment results.
- Attributed to Calvin Coolidge, in Stanley Walker, City Editor (1934), p. 131. Reported as unverified in Respectfully Quoted: A Dictionary of Quotations (1989).
- Unemployment, of course, sends the economy into a recession, creating more unemployment. Ironically, unemployment hurts women more than men. Feminists argue that’s because of sex discrimination: women are the last to be hired and the first to be fired. Correct on the outcome; wrong on the reason. We hire first what we need most, and we fire first what we need least. That’s why you hire the garbage collector first, and fire him last. Men may be hired first and fired last because more men are willing to do society’s dirty work and hazardous work for a lower price.
- Warren Farrell, Why Men Earn More (2005), p. 212.
- But the time will come when New England will be as thickly peopled as old England. Wages will be as low, and will fluctuate as much with you as with us. You will have your Manchesters and Birminghams; and, in those Manchesters and Birminghams, hundreds of thousands of artisans will assuredly be sometimes out of work. Then your institutions will be fairly brought to the test.
- Thomas Babington Macaulay, letter to Henry Stephens Randall (May 23, 1857); in Thomas Pinney, ed., The Letters of Thomas Babington Macaulay (1981), vol. 6, p. 95. Pinney notes that the letter "was published in part as early as 1860 and has frequently been reprinted since", but deems a February 1877 publication in Harper's Magazine as "the place of first full publication so far as I have been able to determine".