full employment


Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Financial, Wikipedia.

full employment

  1. the policy of many governments in the late 1930s and in the immediate postwar period, which was to seek to maintain high levels of employment. In practice this has usually meant a level of employment below that in which all those seeking work are employed.
  2. (KEYNESIAN ECONOMICS) the level of employment which a capitalist economy can sustain (e.g. without excessive inflation). KEYNES recognized that the level of unemployment would always be greater than zero, owing to the number of workers changing jobs, some seeking jobs who were unfit for work, etc., but he assumed that, by government management of demand, higher levels of employment could be sustained than in the past.
In fact, the levels of ‘full employment’ that Keynes believed possible have proved difficult for governments to obtain without leading to inflationary pressures on the economy (see also INFLATION, MONETARISM).