Unemployment Numbers You Need To Know

Although I hate taxes as much as the next guy, I have to appreciate some of what I get for my money. Case in point, how often do you check the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics? Okay, there was a time would I would have said “never” as well. However, I feel myself being pulled back to it from time to time because of the piles and piles of data it has. For example, late last year (or was it early this year?) the BLS published a report called “Employment Projections: 2008-2018 Summary.” What did it do? In a nutshell, it looked at a bunch of numbers and predicted which industries would boom over the next decade and which one would go the way of the dinosaur.

Hint! Hint! If I were a college student picking out a career or someone who was about to invest in some vocational training, I would look really hard at data like this. It would be a tragedy to invest so much time and energy into an industry that will (most likely) be irrelevant by the time I graduate or complete my training program. (Make sense?)

Okay, here are the highlights from that report:

The top 10 growth industries:

* Management, scientific and technical consulting services
* Offices of physicians
* Computer systems design and related services
* Other general merchandise stores
* Employment services
* Local government, excluding education and hospitals
* Home health care services
* Services for the elderly and persons with disabilities
* Nursing care facilities
* Full-service restaurants

The top 10 industries expected to experience the steepest employment declines:

* Department stores
* Semiconductor and other electronic component manufacturing
* Motor vehicle parts manufacturing
* Postal service
* Printing and related support activities
* Cut and sew apparel manufacturing
* Newspaper publishers
* Support activities for mining
* Gasoline stations
* Wired telecommunications carriers

And here are a few more interesting tidbits you might want to know:

* As Baby Boomers grow older and continue their trend of increased labor force participation, the number of persons ages 55+ in the labor force is expected to increase by 12 million, or 43% percent, during the 2008-18 period. Those ages 55+ are projected to make up nearly one-quarter of the labor force in 2018.

* Young people (age 16-24) are expected to account for 12.7% of the labor force in 2018, and persons in the prime-age working group (ages 25- 54) to account for 63.5% of the 2018 labor force.

* Hispanics (who can be of any race) will join the labor force in greater numbers than non-Hispanics. The number of Hispanics in the labor force is projected to grow by 7.3 million or 33.1%. Their share of the labor force will expand from 14.3% in 2008 to 17.6% in 2018.

* All but three of the top 30 fastest-growing detailed occupations are found within professional and related occupations and service occupations. Seventeen of these rapidly growing occupations are related to healthcare or medical research.

So there you have it ladies and gentlemen, your tax dollars at work.

-Jim Stroud

Source: http://www.bls.gov/news.release/ecopro.nr0.htm

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One thought on “Unemployment Numbers You Need To Know”

  1. That is great advice for someone who is unsure of a good field. Unfortunately, numbers like those will often overlook emerging fields and emerging job opportunities. For example, they might overlook the job, “iPad developer” or “reality TV actor”. Unfortunately, those numbers will also overlook how difficult it may be to actually enter the listed fields. I would recommend that you also speak to people in the industry after looking at the numbers. This will give college students and potential job seekers a more complete picture.


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