For the second month in a row, despite economist predictions and public hopes to the contrary, there was little recovery in the job market.
In June, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ monthly employment report, the economy added just 18,000 jobs (about 87,000 fewer than predicted by economists) and the unemployment rate rose to 9.2 percent, from 9.1 percent in May. The report included revised numbers for May that were also disappointing — while the initial report released in June estimated that 54,000 jobs were added, revised figures put the number closer to 25,000.
While the BLS numbers are seen as a key indicator of the nation’s economic progress, they also paint an overly simplified picture of a complicated job market that is experiencing growth, stagnation and decline all at the same time. CareerBuilder CEO Matt Ferguson described it as a “multi-speed job market” on a recent appearance on CNBC.
And — since we know that if you’re one of the millions of people out of work right now, it doesn’t matter what the job numbers say, you’re going to continue your job search regardless, because you need a job — we decided to break the job numbers down by industry, to show you which ones are growing and which ones are weakening.
The industries that are experiencing growth are largely in the private sector, which added 57,000 jobs in June, according to the BLS. (As an aside, the monthly private sector jobs report by business services outsourcing firm ADP showed a more optimistic 157,000 jobs added.)
- Mining: According to the BLS, employment in mining and related support activities grew by 8,000 in June, for a total of 128,000 jobs added since the industry reached a low point in October 2009. Unemployment in the broader BLS sector of mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction was 5.2 percent in June, much lower than the national average for all sectors.
- Professional and technical services: The industry — made up of occupations like advertising, computer services and consulting — added 24,000 jobs last month, for a total of 245,000 jobs since its low point in March 2010. This goes hand-in-hand with CareerBuilder’s Mid Year Forecast, released yesterday, which found that employers are experiencing the largest shortage of workers in the areas of information technology, customer service and communications.
- Leisure and hospitality: Leisure and hospitality, comprised of jobs in arts, entertainment and recreation, and accommodation and food services added 34,000 jobs last month. Monthly job openings in the industry have gone from a low point of 183,000 in November 2009, to 384,000 in April 2011, the most recent month from which data is available.
- Health care: Health care, considered the employment haven of the last three years, grew by 14,000 jobs in June. The growth, while good, is slightly slower than the industry average for the 12 months prior, when health care grew by about 24,000 jobs each mont
These industries aren’t experiencing significant growth, but they’re not losing jobs, either.
- Manufacturing: After gaining more that 164,000 jobs between November 2010 and April 2011, job growth in manufacturing was flat in May and June.
- Temporary help services: A subsector of the BLS’ larger professional and business services sector, and seen by some as an indicator of overall labor demand, growth in temporary help services has been flat all year.
- Construction: The construction sector may not be losing jobs, but it’s not exactly healthy — the unemployment rate in the industry is currently a high 15.6 percent.
- All other private sector industries: Growth in all other private sector industries, like publishing, telecommunications, data processing, finance and insurance, and wholesale and retail trade, was little changed last month.
Month after month, it’s the public sector that persistently experiences declining employment.
- Government jobs: The public sector — which includes jobs within local, state and federal government, as well as advocacy, grantmaking and civic organizations — shed 39,000 jobs last month, including 14,000 federal jobs. Positions in state and local government continue to account for the majority of jobs lost, though, and have been on the decline since 2008.
What are your thoughts on the most recent job numbers? Let us know in the comments section.