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Should We Increase Economic Growth or Boost Employment? The problem of American economic growth


  • Bettina Martus

    () (PhD Student, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, University of Szeged)


The United States of America is in a difficult economic situation. It was forced to address several problems during the crisis, but one of these still requires an answer: how should it grow in order to ensure that employment reaches pre-crisis levels? This phenomenon is not specific to the US and not just characteristic of the current crisis. Although this country is the land of opportunities, it has yet to resolve the problem of jobless growth. In this paper, I will investigate the factors that have led to the emergence and persistence of this phenomenon. After presenting the facts and trends related to jobless growth, I will analyse the causes which triggered the problem. I divided the factors influencing jobless growth into three groups. In most cases, these factors clearly support economic growth, but the number of employed people should also be increased in order to boost the profit of companies (which in this case results in economic growth). By providing a synthesis of the literature and statistical data, it has become clear that the problem is deepening and is very difficult to resolve. In this paper, I will address only one of the problems, namely GDP growth.

Suggested Citation

  • Bettina Martus, 2015. "Should We Increase Economic Growth or Boost Employment? The problem of American economic growth," Public Finance Quarterly, State Audit Office of Hungary, vol. 60(2), pages 249-269.
  • Handle: RePEc:pfq:journl:v:60:y:2015:i:2:p:249-269

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Mulligan Casey B, 2009. "Is Macroeconomics Off Track?," The Economists' Voice, De Gruyter, vol. 6(10), pages 1-4, November.
    2. Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1969. "Distribution of Income and Wealth among Individuals," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 37(3), pages 382-397, July.
    3. Stacey L. Schreft & Aarti Singh, 2003. "A closer look at jobless recoveries," Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, issue Q II, pages 45-73.
    4. Anders Waxell, 2011. "Life Sciences and Human Capital: Jobless Growth on Specialised and Local Labour Markets?," Growth and Change, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 42(3), pages 231-260, September.
    5. Matthew J. Slaughter & Phillip L Swagel, 1997. "Does Globalization Lower Wages and Export Jobs?," IMF Economic Issues 11, International Monetary Fund.
    6. Rosen, Sherwin, 1981. "The Economics of Superstars," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 71(5), pages 845-858, December.
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    More about this item


    jobless growth; GDP; USA; employment rate;

    JEL classification:

    • E2 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment
    • J2 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor
    • O4 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity


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