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Monday, February 14, 2011

January Unemployment Rate Drops to 9%

The Bureau of Labor Statistics released January Employment Situation Summary, announcing the unemployment rate had dropped from 9.4 to 9.0% in the first month of 2011. The number of unemployed people decreased by 600,000, however, a disappointing 36,000 jobs were added. Retail and manufacturing jobs increased over the month, while construction, transportation and warehousing jobs declined.
The number of employed people increased about 100,000 from December 2010 to January 2011, and was up about 800,000 since January 2010. Meanwhile the number of unemployed decreased 600,000 over the month, and fell by almost 1 million from January 2010 to January 2011. The “long-term unemployed”—those having been unemployed for 27 weeks or more—fell by 200,000 over the month and 100,000 over the year. However, the number of people not in the labor force increased over the month from 85.2 million to 85.5 million and increased about 2 million over the year.
The manufacturing and retail sectors grew in January 2011. Manufacturing jobs increased by 49,000 jobs, mostly in motor vehicles and parts, fabricated metal products, machinery and computer and electronic products. Retail jobs grow by 28,000 last month, mostly in clothing stores.  Healthcare Jobs continued their upward trend, adding 11,000 jobs.
The construction, transportation and warehousing industries declined in employment over the past month. Construction jobs fell by 32,000, with losses in non-residential contractors and building construction. Severe weather in parts of the country during this period may have impacted employment in construction. Transportation and Warehousing  jobs fell by 38,000 in January, reflecting a drop in couriers and messengers.