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The article, "Marital and Family Characteristics of Workers, March 1961," beginning on p. 9 of this issue, discusses the contribution of various family members to the family's income, as well as their personal characteristics and their employment


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The Labor Month in Review

PRESIDENT KENNEDY on January 11 included in his State of the Union Message a six-point program to stabilize the economy and promote employment opportunities: retraining of displaced workers, special job help and training for young workers, tax credits to stimulate plant modernization, authority to lower personal income rates under certain conditions, authority to speed up public works when unemployment reaches a specified level, and permanent strengthening of the unemployment insurance system.

The President's Advisory Committee on LaborManagement Policy on the same day approved a report which rejected "the too common assumption that continuing unemployment is an inherent cost of automation." A comprehensive program to prevent or alleviate any ill effects included promotion of economic growth, improved educational facilities for training and basic education, liberalization and private supplementation of unemployment insurance, protection of displaced workers' job and pension equities, revision of seniority systems, public funds to public funds to transfer displaced workers, improvement of the employment service, public works, and other stimulation of the economy. Members Arthur Burns and Henry Ford entered vigorous dissents to the approach, assumptions, and certain specifics of the report, although agreeing with the basic aims of the committee. Text of the report and the dissents will appear in the next issue.

IN ADDITION to the Presidential message and committee report, there was a legacy of late 1961 plans, proposals, and programs from various scholars on unemployment and other labor matters. These are presented in capsule form. Richard C. Wilcock and Walter H. Franke, of the University of Illinois, told a joint meeting of the Industrial Relations Research Association and e the American Economic Association that an avernt' age quarterly growth rate in gross national product of 2.5 to 3.0 percent might be necessary "in the next 5 or 6 quarters to reduce unemploy


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ment to a 4-percent level." The Joint Economic Committee, in a study paper, stated: "labor market symptoms that would indicate that higher unemployment has been due to structural causes are almost totally absent," and this "confirms . . the aggregate demand theory. Indications of inadequate demand are present. . . . The paper contended that the unemployment rate could probably be brought to 4.0 to 4.2 percent "before running into structural resistance of output and employment." Victor R. Fuchs, of the Ford Foundation, reported to the American Statistical Association that it "would be much easier to apply a policy of strong aggregate demand if the labor force were more mobile, . . . and if other limitations on supply were reduced." Under such conditions, "there would be less likelihood of inflationary pressures developing short of full employ

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[to match] our . . . comprehensive data on the supply side with information about the demand side."

But there were numerous suggestions nontheless on bow further to quantify or refine unemployment data. Stanley Lebergott, of Stanford University, suggested to a joint IRRA-AEA meeting that the Monthly Report on the Labor Force be done weekly. He proposed further a tabulation showing for the current month those who last month had factory jobs, other non-farm jobs, were not in the labor force, or were unemployed. Factory workers in the current month would be classified as to number jobless last month, not in the labor force, or in other work last month. In addition, he would like mobility studies of the long-term unemployed.

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