Walking north along Los Alamitos Blvd., I was pleased to note a “Help Wanted” sign in the window of ABC Pools, 10560 Los Alamitos Blvd. in Los Alamitos. The company builds pools, services pools, and sells pool supplies. It has operated since 1968.
I wish that I could report that they are members of the Los Alamitos Area Chamber of Commerce.
But I can report what that “Help Wanted” sign says:
- Driver’s license
- Personal truck
- Experience not required
- Call 562-430-8515
According to Bill McBride at Calculated Risk, the current expansion is now tied for second longest economic expansion in U.S. history, with the expansion of 106 months from a trough in February 1961 to a peak in December 1969. He expects this expansion to outdo the #1 expansion in length, from a trough in March 1991 to a peak in March 2001 — 120 months.
Here is one of his pretty graphs, showing hires and separations, that bears on the “Help Wanted” sign at ABC Pools:
The yellow line shows job openings like the one at ABC Pools. The trend has been robustly upward since the trough of the Great Recession in 2009 when people weren’t quitting for fear of not finding another job.
With all those job openings, the question becomes: what sort of jobs are available? And, do the skills of the work force match the job openings?
Locally, for small businesses, which sort are doing well and which are hurting? Recent anecdotal evidence suggests that restaurants are cooking but retail shops are… not.