Blunt Addresses Springfield Business Leaders; FED Economist Dismisses Recession Talk

Senator Roy Blunt addressed a group of business leaders at the University Plaza hotel on Wednesday, saying that the current economic environment is “great” for someone looking for a job.

Blunt highlighted to those in attendance at the Springfield Business Development Corporation gathering that the U.S. has a record 15 straight months of having more open jobs than Americans who are seeking work. Blunt also noted, however, that a skills gap is partially responsible for the number of job openings, and that some businesses are hiring people not truly qualified for a position to make sure they have a worker who is ready to fill a need.

“They hire someone who is about 80 percent trained for the job they need filled,” Blunt said. “When I ask them why, they tell me they’d rather hire someone who is 80 percent ready for the job and train them in the way they want the job done rather than wait and hope they don’t have to hire someone only 60 percent ready because the other person took another job.”

Blunt said in today’s job market, someone with marketable skills has a better chance to find a job than in previous years. He noted a group of young tradesmen he spoke with who started their careers around the same age and found they could build a career without excessive student loan debt and make an income that could comfortably support a family.

“They were all around age 28,” Blunt said. “They went to college for a semester or two, decided it wasn’t for them, and then spend years as a bartender…then they realized they wouldn’t be able to support a family and obtained job training.”

“They lost a decade,” Blunt said, “and when you lose a decade like that, you end up behind in saving for the future and it’s almost impossible to catch up.”

Blunt said that education for young Missourians is important when it comes to career opportunities and that we need to endure they have ways to explore potential future careers while young.

The meeting of Springfield business leaders also heard from FED economist Kevin Kliesen, who said despite many claims in the national media political commentators, a recession is not something America will see any time soon.

Kliesen told the business owners that while indicators say the possibility of a recession isn’t zero, it’s so low that the current panic among parts of the media are not valid.

Kliesen noted that many economic indicators that would show a recession were “inconclusive” and that despite one indicator (the yield curve) showing a recession is possible, the other indicators were not showing the same thing, and that the current economic conditions are not the same as previous times the yield curve showed a recession. He also noted that it’s only been a few months that the yield curve has been inverted and you need many more months of that indicator being in that situation for a trend to have validity.

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