Some observers have attributed the dramatic growth in temporary employment that occurred in the United States during the 1980s to increased participation in the workforce by certain groups, such as first-time or reentering workers, who supposedly prefer such arrangements. However, statistical analyses reveal that demographic changes in the workforce did not correlate with variations in the total number of temporary workers. Instead, these analyses suggest that factors affecting employers account for the rise in temporary employment. One factor is product demand: temporary employment is favored by employers who are adapting to fluctuating demand for products while at the same time seeking to reduce overall labor costs. Another factor is labor's reduced bargaining strength, which allows employers more control over the terms of employment. Given the analyses, which reveal that growth in temporary employment now far exceeds the level explainable by recent workforce entry rates of groups said to prefer temporary jobs, firms should be discouraged from creating excessive numbers of temporary positions. Government policymakers should consider mandating benefit coverage for temporary employees, promoting pay equity between temporary and permanent workers, assisting labor unions in organizing temporary workers, and encouraging firms to assign temporary jobs primarily to employees who explicitly indicate that preference.

According to the passage, which of the following is true of the "factors affecting employers" that are mentioned in the highlighted text?

Most experts cite them as having initiated the growth in temporary employment that occurred during the 1980s.

They may account for the increase in the total number of temporary workers during the 1980s.

They were less important than demographic change in accounting for the increase of temporary employment during the 1980s.

They included a sharp increase in the cost of labor during the 1980s.

They are more difficult to account for than are other factors involved in the growth of temporary employment during the 1980s.


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