June 9, 2014: The context behind the jobs numbers

Posted by mmcmullan on 06/09/2014

Good morning,

And welcome to the Early Shift. There’s some neat stuff happening out there in manufacturing today, so let’s get to it.

First things first: It’s the Monday after the monthly jobs report. We’ve all had a few days to cool down and people who keep an eye on such things will no doubt remember the initial number that grabbed all of Friday’s headlines –- 217,000 jobs created last month. But if you dig a little deeper past the jobs number crust, you’ll come to the layer called context. The Wall Street Journal reports that though the number of people working is back at 2008 levels, “the number of jobs in manufacturing, construction and government—typically well-paying fields—has shrunk, while lower-wage work grew.” In fact:

The number of jobs in manufacturing, construction and government—typically well-paying fields—has shrunk, while lower-wage work grew. The U.S. has 1.6 million fewer manufacturing jobs than when the recession began, but 941,000 more jobs in the accommodation and food-service sector. More than 40% of the jobs added in just the past year have come in generally lower-paying fields such as food service, retail and temporary help.

Still, it’s not bad for manufacturers everywhere. You might not have guessed it, but South Florida has quite a manufacturing footprint, and the Sun-Sentinel has an interesting profile on this certain corner of the economy.

Elsewhere: Want a good rundown on the threat facing the steelworkers who make oil country tubular goods? Here’s a pretty solid interview with United Steelworkers official Tom Conway on the subject, brought to you by WESA, NPR’s Pittsburgh affiliate.

And lastly:

Apple still makes the vast majority of its products overseas, but we’re glad it has brought some manufacturing back to the states.

And that’s it. That it and that’s all, everyone. Next Early Shift coming this Friday!

-AAM

Related recent Blogs

@KeepitMadeinUSA on Twitter