Why companies are clinging to workers, despite the economic downturn

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A lingering economic puzzle explains why

the labor force remains tight amid slowing growth, high inflation and growing fears of recession.

Gross domestic product growth slipped into negative territory in the first half of the year. Borrowing costs have risen sharply as the Federal Reserve raises interest rates in an effort to reduce inflation. Despite this, the monthly payroll rose by an average of 438,000 from January to August, almost three times its pre-pandemic rate of 2019.

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