Networks Downplay Good Economic News of Workers Finding New Jobs

More Americans are quitting their jobs and even some media are admitting “that’s a good thing.”

The rising rate of American workers quitting their jobs voluntarily shows their confidence in the economy, especially the labor market. The quits rate is the highest its been since 2001. Many news outlets reported the good economic news, but not ABC and NBC news programming according to a Nexis search from July 4-15. (During that time other media were focused on the numbers and the May data was released).

Their network counterpart CBS only mentioned rising numbers of people quitting in a “this morning’s headlines” segment July 5, during CBS This Morning. That broadcast noted a Wall Street Journal headline about the 3.4 million Americans who quit their jobs in April. CBS didn’t ever report that the quits rate went even higher in May — to a 17-year-high.

That news was reported by the Journal, Fortune, Associated Press, and mentioned in a Washington Post blog, and was even reported on liberal cable channels CNN and MSNBC during that time period.

On July 4, the Journal reported “In This Economy, Quitters Are Winning.” The story included interviews with job quitters from around the country as well as citing the numbers from April. Soon after, the May data was released by the Bureau of the Labor Statistics.

“Job-switchers saw roughly 30% larger annual pay increases in May than those who stayed put over the past 12 months, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta,” the Journal explained. A Business Insider story on July 6, had even higher figures for the pay increases for job switchers.

The Associated Press reported on July 10, that more people were quitting and it was “a sign that more people are confident they can find a new job, probably at higher pay.”

“The share of workers quitting their jobs reached 2.4% in May, the highest level since April 2001. More quits are a sign of a strong job market,” AP reported.

Some economists say the rising number of quitters will mean higher wage growth. Senior U.S. economist Michael Pearce of Capital Economics told MarketWatch, “The rise in job quits rate points to wage growth accelerating to 3% by the end of the year.”

Economy Unemployment ABC CBS NBC Fortune magazine Wall Street Journal
Julia A. Seymour's picture


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