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November 1995, Vol. 118, No. 11
Industry output and employment projections to 2005
James C. Franklin
Total employment is projected to grow by 17.7 million over the 1994-2005 period, from 127 million in 1994 to the projected 2005 level of 144.7 million. Based on the moderate alternative of the Bureau of Labor Statistics employment projections, this absolute growth translates into an average annual growth rate of 1.2 percent-a much slower pace of growth than the 2.0-percent rate of growth over the 1983-94 period. The growth in total employment is mostly accounted for by the 16.9 million projected growth in nonfarm wage and salary jobs (from 113.3 million to 130.2 million). The number of nonfarm self-employed and unpaid family workers are projected to increase from 9.1 million to 10.3 million, while private household workers are projected to decline from 1.0 million to 0.8 million. The combined number of agricultural self-employed and wage and salary workers is also projected to decline by 0.2 million from the 1994 level of 3.6 million. (See table 1.)
Development of these projections begins with a macro economic projection of the U.S. economy. The factors that characterize the macro level projections, by necessity, affect the industry level projections of output and employment. All industries are generally affected by such factors as the overall growth in gross domestic product (GDP), but more specific results of the macro projections, such as a slower growth in the labor force, an improved balance of foreign trade, and a gradually improving Federal budget balance, affect individual industries to varying degrees.1
Most importantly, all of the projected growth in nonfarm wage and salary employment at the major industry division level occurs in the service-producing sector, with the exception of employment gains in construction on the goods-producing side of the economy. The level of nonfarm wage and salary employment in the service-producing sector is projected to increase by 17.8 million, from 89.4 million in 1994 to 107.3 million in 2005. Although employment in the goods-producing sector is expected to decrease by 1.0 million, from 23.9 million in 1994 to 22.9 million in 2005, nonfarm wage and salary jobs are left with a projected increase of 16.8 million. Over the historical 1983-94 period, the service-producing sector dominated (23 million) over the goods-producing sector (.6 million) for net growth in nonfarm wage and salary jobs.
This excerpt is from an article published in the November 1995 issue of the Monthly Labor Review. The full text of the article is available in Adobe Acrobat's Portable Document Format (PDF). See How to view a PDF file for more information.
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1 For further discussion of the macro economic influences, see Norman C. Saunders, "The U.S. economy to 2005," Monthly Labor Review, November, 1995, pp. 10-28.
How accurate are recent BLS occupational projections? October 1991.
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