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Payrolls in January 2009

February 09, 2009

In January, payroll employment declined in nearly all major industries, while health care and private education added jobs.

Over-the-month change in payroll employment, January 2008-January 2009
[Chart data—TXT]

Manufacturing employment fell by 207,000 in January, the largest 1-month decline since October 1982. Durable goods manufacturing lost 157,000 jobs, with notable decreases in fabricated metal products, motor vehicles and parts, and machinery.

Construction lost 111,000 jobs in over the month. Employment in the industry has fallen by about 1.0 million since peaking in January 2007.

The temporary help industry lost 76,000 jobs in January. Since its recent peak in December 2006, temporary help employment has declined by 695,000.

Retail trade employment fell by 45,000 in January and by 592,000 since a peak in November 2007. Transportation and warehousing lost 44,000 jobs in January and 202,000 since the start of the recession.

Employment in financial activities declined by 42,000 over the month and it has fallen by 388,000 since a peak in December 2006. In January, job losses occurred in securities, commodity contracts, and investments and in credit intermediation.

Health care employment continued to trend up in January with a gain of 19,000. Employment gains in the industry averaged 30,000 a month in 2008. Employment in private education rose by 33,000 over the month.

These data are from the BLS Current Employment Statistics program, and are seasonally adjusted. Data for the most recent two months are preliminary. More information can be found in "The Employment Situation: January 2009" (PDF) (HTML), news release USDL 09-0117.


Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Payrolls in January 2009 at (visited June 13, 2024).

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