The employment-population ratio — the number of employed people as a percentage of the U.S. adult population — plunged to 52.8% in May, meaning 47.2% of Americans are jobless.

As the induced shutdown tore through the labor market, the share of population employed dropped sharply from a recent high of 61.2% in January, farther away from a post-war record of 64.7% in 2000.

This ratio is a broader look at the employment picture. It takes into account adults not in the labor force and captures those who were discouraged about the prospects of finding a job, whereas the unemployment rate looks at people actively looking for a job. 

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