US unemployment rate growth slowed in May
Economic meltdown cooling?
The unemployment rate in the United States rose to 9.4 per cent in May, after employers cut 345,000 jobs. That's certainly nothing to be happy about, until you realize that this is about half the average job losses per month reported in the US for the past six months. And more good news: the May job cuts were a lot lower than expected.
According to the Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics, which puts together the monthly jobs report, there were steep job losses in the manufacturing sector. But declines were moderating in the services and construction segments of the US economy, which it estimates as having 132.2 million non-farm workers after the declines in May.
Since the recession in the States began in December 2007, seven million jobs have been eliminated. The BLS has had to revise its quarterly numbers a bunch of times, but says now that the job losses averaged 643,000 cuts per month over the past six months, the steepest part of the global economic meltdown. With job cuts being a lagging indicator, politicians and armchair economists are hoping - well, maybe they are really praying - that the decline in the job cut rate means the economy is already on the mend in the States.
It certainly isn't in the auto industry. Employment there peaked in February 2000, according to the BLS, and as of the end of May the number of jobs in motor vehicle and parts manufacturing has fallen by 50 per cent. Last month, the car and parts makers shed 30,000 jobs, and all told manufacturers shed 156,000 jobs.
The construction industry shed another 59,000 jobs in May, which is considerably better than the 117,000 jobs per month averaged across the last six months. Companies in professional and business services cut 51,000 jobs, which is better than the average of 136,000 job cuts over the previous six months running from November 2008 through April 2009.
The leisure and hospitality industry actually had no job cuts in May, after averaging 39,000 layoffs per month during the prior six months.
There is no way to use the monthly data coming out of the BLS to get a sense of unemployment in the IT sector, but you can tease out some statistics about IT vendors, if you use that term loosely.
The BLS reckons that employment for computer and electronics parts manufacturers dropped by 13,600 in May, to 1.15 million workers. Within this group, computer and peripheral equipment makers shed 2,600 jobs, to 165,200, while communications equipment makers cut 700 employees, to 127,400.
Semiconductor and electronic components manufacturers located in the United States let go 5,700 people, with an aggregate of 382,800 people on the payroll as of the end of May. (These are raw BLS numbers, not ones that are seasonally adjusted.)
The BLS tucks telecommunications and data processing, hosting and related services into the same broad categories as publishing and movie-making (yeah, I know, that's dumb), but at least this area is broken out separately; in May, the data processing segment of the US economy lost 4,400 jobs, falling to 253,700 workers.
The telecom industry added 900 jobs, with an aggregate 988,300 people on the payroll, but still significantly lower than the 1.03 million people getting paychecks a year ago at telecom companies in the States. Finally, the computer systems and design and related services segment of the professional and business services sector tracked by the BLS lost 2,500 jobs, to just over 1.45 million people.
You can see the full May jobs report here (pdf). ®
Yes, what about those pesky aliens...?
Dear Anonymous Coward,
What about the aliens...? Yes, what about the aliens? Do you really think getting the aliens out of the United States (or any country) is really going to kick-start the economy?
These persons are not working in IT. Or banking. Or health care. Or social work. There may be plenty of foreign workers in these industries, but these are not illegal immigrants.
Where I come from, illegal immigrants are working primarily in agriculture. They are in the fields starting at 5 in the morning having nothing to look forward to except picking fruits, vegatables and melons in the heat of the day for the next twelve to eighteen hours.
Twelve to eighteen long hours. In the heat of the sun. In the pouring rain. In sleet, snow, wind, hail, and all other flavours of "weather". With few or no breaks. Working with all of the speed, strength, stamina, and accuracy they can muster. And always worried about immigration agents raiding the farms and sending them home where there is (apparently) no work to feed an (equally apparently) starving family.
Could you do that? Could you work those hours in those conditions while fearing deportation and prison? Day after day? Not knowing the local language? Not knowing your rights? Working no matter how you were treated by your employer who cares even less about you than the law of the land?
Would you fill one of those jobs if they became available because all of the "non-citizens" were sent packing? Sir, I have come to understand that the jobs taken by illegal immigrants are often the ones the local "citizens" refuse to fill.
I bid you Good Day, Sir.
DISCLAIMER: Prior to my move across the pond, I worked in Phoenix - about 100 miles north of the greatest migration free-for-all in the West. And I speak as one of those "aliens" (albeit a "legal alien" through marriage and appropriate visas - but not a "citizen" who you state should get all the jobs). And I appreciate you probably were not targetting me personally, but it can be so difficult to be sure given the tone & content of your posting.
Employment is screwed
the economy has returned.
Yes, that's what people don't get, most of the money is in the hands of the few, and for them it is just about being able to buy their purchases and not feel guilty about it. The rich are back buying and it turns out it is cheaper to offshore then use Western people, because the taxation levels and currency is too high in the west,
You now have to compete on ownership and quality, which is a big step for most, you cannot get by on cheap skills and not own, you now have to up in two areas, and most are not capable of that.
Cooperatives could be the way, but most find the idea a little alien, it is not really taught or discussed that much, but that is where most should be looking, part ownership in a group.
ain't seen nothing yet
This problem we're seeing with joblessness can really be seen with these large corporations that have for years and years outsourced jobs.
Now they are threatening to packup and move overseas? Let them and tariff the products. That would put an end to the threats these big corporate companies are making.
Add a 20% tariff on their imported goods, that'll keep em over here or close em up. If they choose to close up it's not going to help or hurt anything anyhow they don't hire us workers they don't have to. Impose a telco-related tariff on companies that outsource their phone and other telco related support to other countries.
Same goes for the banks, after all the bailouts the number of Visa's requested for the banking sector skyrocketed as they imported cheap labor after getting all that taxpayer money.
How many years have these banks and credit card companies been outsourcing? They have been outsourcing since I was riding a bicycle several moons ago. Now what, everyones out of work over here? Gee-whiz I wonder why, if only the ceos and execs of these companies were outsourced we wouldn't have this problem.
This is a + for government jobs over here. I mean yeah government can't run anything properly but at least for the "most part" the jobs are over here. I know they outsource for passports and other things but all in all at least they usually hire american, they just can't mange it after that.
Tariff Tariff Tariff, that would of put an end to all of this going back when the steel industry was bulldozed, if we were putting tariffs on these foreign cars we have people would of been encouraged to either buy American, or spend more for destroying our economy.
I should be president.