The latest overall job loss numbers showed a loss of 539,000 jobs in April and the unemployment rate climbed to 8.9%. While still a high number, this is the smallest drop since October of last year. The March numbers were revised to a loss of 699,000 and the February numbers were revised to a loss of 681,000. 5.7 million jobs have now been lost since this recession began. In the 2001 recession, monthly losses hit a high of 325,000. The 1990-91 recession peaked at 306,000 losses. As you can see from the chart below, numbers peak toward the end of a recession (past recessions are marked by grey bands), making employment a lagging indicator.
Here is a breakdown of where the job losses were as well as which sectors were adding jobs. Worst hit was manufacturing and professional services. Again, government and health services added the most jobs.
Total change in non-farm payroll = - 539,000
- Private Sector = - 611,000
- Natural Resources & Mining = - 11,000
- Construction = - 110,000
- Manufacturing = - 149,000
- Durable goods = - 127,000
- Non-durable goods = - 22,000
- Services = - 269,000
- Wholesale Trade = - 40,700
- Retail Trade = - 46,700
- Transportation = - 38,100
- Utilities = - 500
- Information & Media = - 17,000
- Financial Svcs & Real Estate = - 40,000
- Professional & Business Svcs = - 122,000
- Education = - 2,100
- Health Svcs = + 16,800
- Leisure = - 44,000
- Government = + 72,000
Despite the high number of job losses, the numbers were better than expected and the futures remained up on the news. In the pre-market, Alcoa , American Express , Bank of America , Citigroup , JP Morgan Chase and General Motors are leading the Dow.
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