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Jobs in Fourth Year of Recovery Buoyed by Female-Dominated Industries

At the End of the Recovery’s Fourth Year, Women Regained More Jobs Lost in Recession than Men

New analysis from the Institute for Women’s Policy Research (IWPR) finds that, as of June 2013, men had regained only 68 percent of the jobs they lost in the recession and women had regained 91 percent of the jobs they lost. Women’s and men’s job growth during the recovery has been largely affected by two trends: contraction in government jobs and growth in industries with high concentrations of women workers. IWPR’s paper analyzes job growth for the four years of the recovery, from June 2009, the official end of the recession, to June 2013.
Jobs in Fourth Year of Recovery Buoyed by Female-Dominated Industries

Women’s & Men’s Job Gains/Losses by Industry, June 2009–June 2013

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Nov 05, 2013

Washington, DC—New analysis from the Institute for Women’s Policy Research (IWPR) finds that, as of June 2013, men had regained only 68 percent of the jobs they lost in the recession and women had regained 91 percent of the jobs they lost. Women’s and men’s job growth during the recovery has been largely affected by two trends: contraction in government jobs and growth in industries with high concentrations of women workers. IWPR’s paper analyzes job growth for the four years of the recovery, from June 2009, the official end of the recession, to June 2013. The analysis is based on finalized data for June 2013 released by Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) in September 2013. (Data released by the BLS in October indicated that women have now regained all of the jobs they had lost during the Great Recession, while men have regained just 70 percent.)

Government served as one of the largest growing industries for both women and men in the first year of the recovery, but experienced substantial losses in the following three years, especially for women. During the four years of the recovery, between June 2009 and June 2013, women lost 62 percent of the 748,000 total Government jobs lost. In fact, if Government spending were not contracting, IWPR estimates that an additional 539,000 people would likely be employed today.

“Women were hit particularly hard by public sector job losses at the state and local level, but regained more of their jobs in the recovery because of their concentration in a few high-growth industries, such as non-government education and health care,” said IWPR President Heidi Hartmann. “Men, in contrast, were less concentrated in high-growth industries, compounding the effects of men’s job losses in the Government sector.”

Despite regaining the jobs they lost during the recession overall, women have actually fared worse than men when it comes to job growth within each industry. According to IWPR’s analysis, women have either lost proportionately more jobs or gained proportionately fewer jobs than men in each industry.

“Were it not for women’s strong presence in a few growing industries women would have fared much worse than they did in the recovery,” said Dr. Hartmann, “since in every industry men’s rate of employment growth has been higher than women’s.”

The Institute for Women's Policy Research (IWPR) is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization that conducts rigorous research and disseminates its findings to address the needs of women and their families, promote public dialogue, and strengthen communities and societies.

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