The United State’s economy added 292,000 jobs in December 2015, according to the latest jobs report by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). These job numbers were far stronger than the 200,000 new jobs that analysts had predicted. Over the course of 2015, job growth totaled 2.7 million, down from 3.1 million in 2014. The unemployment rate remained steady at 5 percent for the third month in a row.
Employment grew in several industries. Professional and business services added 73,000 jobs with temporary help services accounting for 34,000 of the gain. In 2015, this sector has added 605,000 jobs, compared to 704,000 jobs added in 2014. Construction added jobs for the third month in a row, gaining 45,000 jobs in December. Healthcare employment increased by 39,000, and food services and drinking places added 37,000 jobs.
The Growing Contingent Workforce
A new CareerBuilder study predicts that temporary employment will increase by 13 percent, or 354,877 jobs, from 2014 to 2019. Some of the occupations expected to add the most temporary jobs include computer systems analysts, home health aides, gaming dealers, cooks in restaurants, substitute teachers, and childcare workers.
Top Occupations for Temporary Employment Growth
“Temporary employment will continue on an upward trajectory as companies look for ways to quickly adapt to market dynamics. Two in five U.S. employers expect to hire temporary or contract workers this year, which opens new doors for workers who want to build relationships with different organizations and explore career options.” ~Eric Gilpin, President of Vertical Sales at CareerBuilder
Manufacturing cities have the highest concentration of temporary jobs, coming in greater than the national average of 2 percent.
Top Ten Metro Areas for Contingent Work
Job Losses in the Mining Industry
The latest report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) shows that the economy added a higher than anticipated 292,000 jobs in December 2015, while unemployment has remained steady at 5 percent for the third month in a row. Several industries are gaining employment, but the mining industry continues on a steady decline.
In December 2015, the mining industry lost 8,000 jobs. Since reaching an employment peak in December 2014, the industry has lost 129,000 jobs in 2015. It was the first year of annual job losses in the industry since 2009.
Most job losses in the sector were in support activities for mining and coal mining. In December, wages for the industry fell by 1.4 percent, while hourly earnings for the total labor market remained flat.
Employment in Mining, 2015
The Slowing Rate of Entrepreneurship
The media is constantly discussing the revenue potential of startups, especially “tech unicorns” – the numerous startups that are valued over $1 billion. Yet, the number of entrepreneurial endeavors in the United States has actually been decreasing.
According to a recent study by Gallup, the U.S. now ranks 12th among developed nations in terms of business startup activity, while countries such as Hungary, Denmark, Finland, New Zealand, Sweden, Israel, Italy have higher startup rates.
Until 2008, startups outpaced business failures by about 100,000 per year. But over the past six years, the total number of new business startups and total number of business closures have started to cross each other – approximately 400,000 new businesses are being created annually, while 470,000 are closing.
In a separate study by the Center for Economic Studies analyzing the rate at which startups are adding employees, the authors found that the number of high-growth firms has slowed down significantly. Over the past 15 years, there have been fewer startups overall, and a decreasing number are able to transform into high-growth companies. This poses an issue for the broader American economy, since these companies typically help add jobs and increase productivity.