The employment-population ratio is a measure of labor market strength; it is calculated by dividing the number of employed workers in an area by the total civilian non-institutionalized population aged 16 and over in that region. This is often used alongside the unemployment rate in determining the strength of the labor market.
- All five counties experienced a decline in their employment-population ratios in both the 2001 and 2008 recessions. In the 2001 recession, Kent County, Michigan, experienced the largest drop in its employment-population ratio, while in the 2008 recession, Summit County, Ohio, had the largest drop in the employment-population ratio. The average decline in the employment-population ratio among these counties due to the 2008 recession was roughly seven percentage points.