IT Career JumpStart

Apr 2 2010   7:16PM GMT

March 2010 Employment Situation Summary

Ed Tittel Ed Tittel Profile: Ed Tittel

Today’s the first Friday in a new month, so the US Bureau of Labor Statistics regales us with the previous month’s “Employment Situation Summary.” Once again, the big numbers show little sign of advance or retreat–gross unemployment continues to hold steady at 9.7 percent–but I see other signs of improvement and encouragement, even though the IT sector lost 12,000 jobs in March.

Why do I say this? Let me share some other numbers with you–namely job gains and (losses) for March on a sector-by-sector basis. Only three sectors were down in March (IT among them, alas) while all nine other sectors were at least slightly up for the month. With a strong majority of employment sectors finally showing job growth  (though plenty of individual numbers are still in the red, as Table B-1: Employees on nonfarm payrolls by industry sector and selected industry detail will attest), it appears that we are finally turning a corner on the overall employment situation.

Here’s a quick summary of those numbers (positive numbers are unadorned, negative numbers are in parentheses):

Sector Net Chg Sector Net Chg
Mining & Logging 9,000 Construction 15,000
Manufacturing 17,000 Private Svc-providing 82,000
Utilities (300) Information (12,000)
Financial Activities (21,000) Professional & Business Svcs 11,000
Education & Health Svcs 45,000 Leisure & Hospitality 22,000
Other Services 6,000 Government 39,000

Although none of the numbers even begins to put a dent into our overall unemployment, it’s a welcome novelty to see so many of them in positive territory. It’s not enough to move the overall unemployment figure by even one-tenth of a percent (which translates into 157,000 people or so), but it’s still nice anyway.

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