Labor Stats Show Job Market Still Depressed

Nancy Anderson
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Despite indicators showing what appears to be an overall improvement in the US economy, the number of open jobs advertised is still on the decline. US Department of Labor statistics showed a decrease of approximately 5% in the number of advertised positions in the month of September, however the situation was worse for the construction industry in specific.

With the national unadjusted unemployment rate sitting at 9.5%, the construction industry has topped 17% unemployment. The industry lost 121,000 jobs across the country over the preceding 12 months, but it would have been far worse were it not for federal aid programs like the military’s Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC), and the stimulus program. Likely, the construction industry won’t see a recovery like the rest of the economy for quite some time, as there’s very little demand for new buildings.

With the manufacturing sector still depressed, construction looks unlikely to move. Businesses are, however, starting to restock their inventories, creating a new demand for manufactured goods. As the great machine starts up, more and more components will begin coming online. In the short term, however, we may just have to wait it out; with 2.5 million jobs currently advertised, there’s one opening for every five American jobseekers.

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Mike Wrightly is mostly diesel fumes and duct tape; he grew up around heavy equipment, and holds a Bachelor's degree in Mechanical Engineering.

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