It’s the summer of strikes.

Hotel workers. Cashiers. Baristas. Screenwriters. Factory workers.

Workers around the nation are walking off the job, demanding better treatment and higher wages.

According to Cornell’s School of Industrial and Labor Relations, approximately 119,000 workers went on strike from January to May this year. That’s nearly double the number from 2022 and five times the number from 2021.

And in recent weeks, even Hollywood actors walked off the set, with the Screen Actors Guild – which represents 160,000 actors – going on strike.

It gets even worse: 22,000 workers from trucking company Yellow could go on strike this week and 340,000 union workers at UPS could start striking next week if disputes over their contracts aren’t resolved.

UPS is responsible for delivering nearly 43% of the packages in the U.S. A strike could delay millions of shipments and cost the economy billions of dollars.

Today I want to point out a major power shift that is taking place in the labor market and what the driving force is behind it. I’ll also share what you can do now to make sure your retirement is secure whether you are soon to be or recently retired.

A Major Power Shift is Taking Place

Workers are fed up. Those that were not let go during the pandemic were forced to take on more work without greater compensation. Then they watched as corporate profits soared in the past few years while they saw little benefit. Meanwhile, inflation made everything more expensive.

And now the economy has given them a golden opportunity to get what they want.

There are too many jobs and not enough workers.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are 9.8 million job openings in the U.S. At the same time, there are only 6 million unemployed workers looking for a job. That means there are about 1.6 jobs for every person that’s looking for work.

The abundance of jobs means that workers can easily find another place to work. That gives them the confidence to demand more benefits and higher salaries from their employers.

They know that if they lose their job, there will be another one waiting for them. So they are willing to take the risk of going on strike.

But why is there suddenly a shortage of workers?

Some think that the economy’s “missing workers” are people choosing not to work.

The data tells a different story.

The Labor Force Participation Rate is the percentage of the population that is either working or actively looking for work. Currently, the Labor Force Participation Rate is 62.6%. That’s about the same level as it was from 2015-2019, before the pandemic.

Instead, there’s a bigger driving force behind it…

Baby Boomers are Leaving the Workforce

Americans are getting older and retiring.

In 2020 about 65% of the country’s population was working age (15-64 years old). Today, that number is down to 62.3%.

The 2.7% difference may not seem like much, but that amounts to 9 million fewer people in the workforce.

The labor shortage caused by this effect is expected to continue throughout this decade as the Baby Boomer generation reaches retirement age while the younger generations replacing them have fewer people.

So get ready for more disruptions. There won’t be many new TV shows or movies for a while.

So what can you do to prepare?

First, I would suggest you order any packages you need now as things may take longer to get delivered.

Second, if you’re invested in companies with workers who are going on strike, do your homework.

In order to get those employees back to work, companies will likely need to provide more compensation for their employees, which means expenses are likely to go up and profits go down.

Can the companies you are invested in afford to pay their employees a better wage? Get out now if they can’t.

Finally, if you’re having trouble figuring out which companies are going to succeed, I created a service designed to help you find the best investments to preserve and grow your wealth while producing an ever-increasing stream of income.

It’s called the Intelligent Income Investor. We provide a model portfolio, as well as trade alerts and special reports on the highest-quality dividend-paying companies the market has to offer. Our focus is on finding safe and secure dividends and stress-free investments.

And right now, there is one play that most investors (aside from multi-millionaires and billionaires) are missing out on. It’s what I call the “Amazon-Royalty” play.

If you’re interested in hearing more about it, click here.

In times like these, it’s more important than ever to make sure your nest egg can support the lifestyle you want.

Happy SWAN (sleep well at night) investing,

Brad Thomas
Editor, Intelligent Income Daily