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Seven months without any major work stoppages

July 09, 2009

For a seven-month period from November 2008 through May 2009 there have been no major work stoppages initiated in the United States.

Number of major work stoppages beginning each month, January 1999-May 2009

Number of workers involved in work stoppages beginning each month, January 1999-May 2009
[Chart data—TXT]

Since 1981, aside from the current seven-month period with no major work stoppages, the longest such period was the three months from November 2003 to January 2004.

Since 1947 (the earliest data available), the smallest number of major work stoppages in a calendar year was 14, in 2003. During the 1947-1980 period there were many years with over 200 work stoppages. The year with the fewest work stoppages was 1963, with 181; the year with the most was 1952, with 470.

Major work stoppages are defined as strikes or lockouts involving more than 1,000 employees. Annual work stoppages data are available for 1947 forward; monthly data on major work stoppages have been published since 1981, additional details concerning work stoppages are available for 1993 forward.

These data are from the BLS Work Stoppages program. Data for the most recent month are preliminary. An annual major work stoppages news release is published each year in mid-February. The most recent annual work stoppages release is "Major Work Stoppages in 2008" (HTML) (PDF), USDL 09-0150. Work stoppages data can be obtained from the Work Stoppages Most Requested Statistics webpage.


Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Seven months without any major work stoppages at (visited June 14, 2024).

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