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Economic News Release
EPP EPP Program Links

Employment Projections and Occupational Outlook Handbook News Release

For release 10:00 a.m. (ET) Tuesday, September 1, 2020                            USDL-20-1646

Technical information:  *
Media contact:           (202) 691-5902   *

                        EMPLOYMENT PROJECTIONS -- 20192029

Employment is projected to grow from 162.8 million to 168.8 million over the 201929
decade, an increase of 6.0 million jobs, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported
today. This reflects an annual growth rate of 0.4 percent, slower than the 2009-19
annual growth rate of 1.3 percent, which was bolstered by recovery from the 2007-09
Great Recession. The healthcare and social assistance sector is projected to add the
most new jobs, and 6 of the 10 fastest growing occupations are related to healthcare.
Growth in real Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is projected to be slower (1.8 percent 
annually) from 2019 to 2029, compared to the previous decade (2.3 percent annually).
Meanwhile labor productivity is projected to increase from 1.1 percent annually over
the 2009 to 2019 period, to 1.8 percent annually from 2019 to 2029. 

 |										  |
 |			    Occupational Outlook Handbook			  |
 |										  |
 | The projections are the foundation of the BLS Occupational Outlook Handbook	  |
 | (OOH), one of the nation's most widely used career information resources. The  |
 | OOH reflects BLS employment projections for the 2019-29 decade. The updated	  |
 | OOH is available online at					  |

Highlights of the BLS projections for the labor force, macroeconomy, industry employment,
and occupational employment are included below.

 |										  |
 |     Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic Impact on Employment Projections Data      |
 |                                                                                |
 | The 201929 projections do not include impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and	  |
 | response efforts. The BLS Employment Projections are developed using models	  |
 | based on historical data, which in this set of projections cover the time	  |
 | period through 2019; all input data therefore precede the pandemic. In	  |
 | addition, the 201929 projections were finalized in the spring of 2020 when	  |
 | there was still significant uncertainty about the duration and impacts of	  |
 | the pandemic.  								  |
 |										  |
 | The BLS Employment Projections are long-term projections intended to capture	  |
 | structural change in the economy, not cyclical fluctuations. As such, they	  |
 | are not intended to capture the impacts of the recession that began in 	  |
 | February 2020. However, besides the immediate recessionary impacts, the	  |
 | pandemic may cause new structural changes to the economy. BLS releases new	  |
 | employment projections annually, and subsequent projections will incorporate	  |
 | new information on economic structural changes as it becomes available.	  |
 |										  |
 | In order to provide more information about potential impacts before the	  |
 | release of the 202030 projections, BLS is developing alternate scenarios	  |
 | for the 201929 projection period that encompass possible impacts from the	  |
 | pandemic. Comparison of these alternate scenarios with the baseline		  |
 | projections released here will demonstrate how changes in consumer behavior	  |
 | caused by the pandemic may alter the projections for detailed occupations	  |
 | and industries. An analysis of these scenarios will be released in a Monthly	  |
 | Labor Review article later in 2020.						  |

Population and Labor Force

  --The civilian noninsitutional population growth rate is projected to decline slightly,
    from 0.9 percent annually in 2009-19 to 0.8 percent annually in 201929. This results
    in an increase of 21.2 million over the 2019-29 projections horizon to a level
    of 280.4 million.

  --The labor force is expected to increase by 8.0 million from 163.5 million in 2019
    to 171.5 million in 2029. The participation rate is projected to decline from 
    63.1 percent in 2019 to 61.2 percent in 2029. The decline in labor force participation
    is due to the aging of the baby-boom generation, a continuation of the declining
    trend in men's participation, and a slight decline in women's participation.

  --By 2029, all baby boomers will be at least 65 years old. The increasing share of
    people age 65 years and older contributes to slower projected growth in the labor
    force, as well as a continued decline in the labor force participation rate, since
    older people are less likely to participate in the labor force.  


  --Real Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is projected to continue growing during the 201929
    period, although at a slower rate than it has historically, at 1.8 percent annually
    compounded through the projections period. 

  --Based on the outlook for business investment and efficiency gains anticipated in the
    use of labor and capital inputs, productivity is expected to grow at an annual rate of
    1.8 percent from 2019 to 2029. This is faster than the 1.1 percent growth from 2009 to
    2019. The rebound in productivity growth represents a more normal pattern of growth over
    the next decade.

Industry Employment

  --Total employment is projected to grow 3.7 percent over the 201929 projections period,
    slower than prior projection periods. Slower labor force growth constrains the projected
    growth of total employment.

  --Five out of the 20 fastest growing industries for the next decade are in the healthcare
    and social assistance sector, the fastest growing major sector in the economy. Factors
    that are expected to contribute to the large increase include increased demand to care
    for the aging baby-boom population, longer life expectancies, and continued growth in
    the number of patients with chronic conditions.

  --Technological advancements are expected to support rapid employment growth in professional,
    business, and scientific services sectors, including computer systems design and related
    services as well as management, scientific, and technical consulting services. 

  --The manufacturing sector is projected to lose 444,800 jobs, the most of any sector over
    the projections decade. This sector also contains 12 of the 20 industries projected to
    have the most rapid employment declines. Factors contributing to the loss of manufacturing
    jobs include the adoption of new productivity-enhancing technologies, such as robotics
    and international competition.

  --As e-commerce continues to grow in popularity, retail trade is projected to lose 368,300
    jobs over the 2019-29 decade.

Occupational Employment      

  --Occupational groups in which employment is projected to grow markedly faster than the
    average include healthcare support occupations, community and social service occupations,
    and computer and mathematical occupations. 

  --Healthcare occupations and those associated with healthcare (including mental health)
    account for 13 of the 30 fastest growing occupations from 2019 to 2029. Demand for
    healthcare services by aging baby boomers, along with people who have chronic conditions,
    will drive the projected employment growth. 

  --Several of the fastest growing healthcare occupations--including nurse practitioners,
    occupational therapy assistants, and physician assistants--are projected to be in greater
    demand as team-based healthcare models are increasingly used to deliver healthcare services.

  --Computer occupations are expected to see fast job growth as strong demand is expected for
    IT security and software development, and as new products associated with the Internet of
    Things (IoT) are developed. These occupations include software developers as well as
    information security analysts.

  --Technological changes facilitating automation and e-commerce are expected to result in
    declining employment for office and administrative support occupations and for sales

More Information

The Occupational Outlook Handbook (OOH) includes information about over 500 detailed 
occupations in over 300 occupational profiles, covering about 4 out of 5 jobs in the economy.
Each profile features the 201929 projections, along with assessments of the job outlook, work
activities, wages, education and training requirements, and more.

  --The OOH is available online at

  --Detailed information on the 201929 projections will appear in the Monthly Labor Review.

  --Tables with detailed, comprehensive statistics used in preparing the projections are 
    available online at

  --Definitions for terms used in this news release are available in the BLS Glossary at 

Information from this news release will be made available to sensory impaired individuals 
upon request. Voice phone: (202) 691-5200; Federal Relay Services: 1 (800) 877-8339.

Technical Note

BLS publishes projections for the labor force, the macroeconomy, industry employment, 
and occupational employment. More information is available online:

   --Labor force:
   --Industry employment:
   --Occupational Employment: 

The projections data provide an overview of expected changes in the economy over a
10-year period. The projections are focused on long-term structural trends of the
economy and do not try to anticipate future business cycle activity. To meet this
objective, specific assumptions are made about the labor force, macroeconomy, industry
employment, and occupational employment. Critical to the production of these projections
is the assumption of full employment for the economy in the projected year. The
projections are not intended to be a forecast of what the future will be but instead
are a description of what would be expected to happen under these specific assumptions
and circumstances. When these assumptions are not realized, actual values will differ
from projections.

The difference between projected changes in the labor force and in employment does not 
imply a labor shortage or surplus. The BLS projections assume labor market equilibrium; 
that is, one in which labor supply meets labor demand except for some level of frictional 
unemployment. In addition, the employment and labor force measures use different 
definitional and statistical concepts. For example, employment is a count of jobs, 
and one person may hold more than one job. Labor force is a count of employed people, 
and a person is counted only once regardless of how many jobs he or she holds. 

For more information, visit the Employment Projections Methodology page 
online at  

Frequently asked questions about the employment projections are 
online at

Users and Uses

The BLS projections are used by high school and college students, their 
teachers and parents, jobseekers, career counselors, and guidance specialists 
to determine jobs in demand. The projections also are used by state workforce 
agencies to prepare state and area projections that, together with the national 
projections, are widely used by policymakers to make decisions about education and 
training, funding allocations, and program offerings. These projections of jobs in 
demand help improve the alignment between education and training and the hiring 
needs of business. In addition, other federal agencies, researchers, and academics 
use the projections to understand trends in the economy and labor market. 

Projections of industry and occupational employment are prepared by each state, 
using input from the BLS National projections. State projections data are available 
at Projections Central

Last Modified Date: September 11, 2020