April 14, 2004
In 2003, government employment contracted for the first time in more than two decades.
Federal government employment decreased 1.8 percent from the fourth quarter of 2002 to the fourth quarter of 2003. Although cutbacks by the U.S. Postal Service account for a portion of the job decline, employment in the Federal Government, except U.S. Postal Service also fell over the year.
Job growth stalled in State government and local government in 2003. Both sectors exhibited no change in employment over the year.
These data are from the Current Employment Statistics program. The above figures refer to fourth-quarter averages and are seasonally adjusted. Find out more about employment in 2003 in "The U.S. labor market in 2003: signs of improvement by year’s end," by Rachel Krantz, Marisa Di Natale, and Thomas J. Krolik, Monthly Labor Review, March 2004.