The study, shared exclusively with FOX Business, found the U.S. is experiencing an unprecedented rise in prime-age workers who are voluntarily leaving the labor force. For men, the trend dates back 50 years, with the labor force participation rate among males dropping from more than 97% in 1955 to 89% before the COVID-19 pandemic; for women, receding workforce participation began in the last two decades.
"As the number of Americans who receive government assistance has grown, more Americans have voluntarily left their jobs," Sen. Mike Lee, the ranking member of the JEC Republicans, said in a statement. "Congress’ plan to spend an additional $3.5 trillion to provide households with new subsidies and fewer incentives to work would only make things worse."
The decline in prime-age labor force participation has been mostly voluntary: Just 12% of unemployed men who are prime-age and able-bodied said they wanted a job or were open to work. At the same time, among men who are not working for reasons other than disability, retirement, education or homemaking, 41% personally received government assistance.