In Time For Father’s Day, Employment Comes Back For Men

Update on the MAN-cession

After taking a beating during the recession, things may be looking up for men.  The man-cession, as it was dubbed by many, saw employment among men plummet by more than 5.2 million between November 2007 and December 2009, due to massive job losses in male-dominated industries such as construction, manufacturing and financial services.  In contrast, the number of employed women fell by 1.9 million during the same period.  Now, with the economy on the slow road to recovery, men’s fortunes appear to be improving.  Since January 2010, male employment has increased by nearly 1.7 million.  In the last 12 months alone, 686,000 men have joined the ranks of the employed.  With unemployment among men still at 8.9 percent, compared to a pre-recession level of 4.2 percent, this segment of the population still has a long way to go before returning to full health, but they are headed in the right direction.  Meanwhile, the recovery has not been as kind to women, whose employment has grown by just 365,000 since January 2010.  Over the last 12 months, the number of employed women has actually fallen by 85,000.  The losses may be due in large part to frantic cost-cutting in the government sector, as local, state and federal agencies buckle under the pressure of mounting budget deficits.  Women represent 57 percent of the 22.1 million Americans employed in the government sector.  At the local level, where government downsizing has been the heaviest, women account for nearly 62 percent of the workforce.  What factors are driving the improvements in male employment? What is the employment outlook for men going forward?  Can women expect an increase in unemployment?  What would be the economic impact of increased unemployment among women? 



Employment Change (Dec 2007 – Dec 2009)

Employment Change (Jan 2010 – May 2011)

Employment Change (May 2010 – May 2011)









Source: Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc. with data provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics


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