Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Despite Recent "He-Covery," It's Still a Mancession



Diane Sawyer in the ABC report above: "There's a new chapter in this very serious battle of the sexes. In this fragile recovery the race is on for jobs and it's all heating up, and one gender is not just winning, it's overwhelming."  The report then goes on to highlight the "he-covery" of men getting all of the new jobs being created during the recovery.  

From January 2010 to February 2011, it's true men have gained jobs and female employment has remained flat (see chart below).  During that period, about 90% of the new 1.2 million payroll jobs have gone to men.  But that's only part of the "jobs by gender" story. 


Here's the part of the "battle of the sexes" that got left out of the story:  If you go all the way back to when employment levels peaked at about 138 million payroll jobs in January 2008, here's the gender breakdown:

1. Male employment is down by 4,932,000 jobs since the January 2008 peak, compared to female employment being 2.549 million jobs below the peak.  Therefore, we can say that for every 100 jobs lost by women since the start of the recession, men have lost 193.5 jobs

2. On a percentage basis, men have suffered about 66% of the recession-related job losses, and women only 34%.

Bottom Line: Despite the fact that the jobs gained in 2010 did favor men during what is being called the "he-covery/mancovery," it's still very much of a "mancession" once we account for all of the jobs gained and lost since the start of the recession.   

14 Comments:

At 3/23/2011 5:14 PM, Blogger Ron H. said...

Thanks for the reminder, Prof. Perry. Now I remember why I so seldom watch ABC news.

 
At 3/23/2011 7:06 PM, Blogger sam said...

I suspect I am not alone in begging you to please, please stop using the terms 'mancession' and 'hecovery'.

The phenomenon may be real. But the terminology is terribly, terribly grating.

 
At 3/24/2011 8:30 AM, Blogger bob wright said...

I enjoy the mancession and hecovery terminology.

It serves to reinforce facts that are overlooked in 1 or 2 minute stories in what is passed off for "news" by ABC/CBS/NBC/CNN.

 
At 3/24/2011 9:05 AM, Blogger Che is dead said...

WORLD ENDS!

Women and minorities hardest hit!

 
At 3/24/2011 12:05 PM, Blogger Kevin Peterman said...

Don't miss the fact that the scales on the figure are different.

There are more working age women in the US than men. Granted, not all women choose to work. Still, payroll employment by gender is much closer now to the US population by gender.

The mancession was a natural correction to an imbalanced workforce. Job growth will favor those with education, and I suspect the numbers will asymptote to the % of bachelor degrees moreso than with population %. Correct the education imbalance and you'll balance the workforce.

 
At 3/24/2011 12:28 PM, Blogger Mike said...

Kevin,
Don't miss the fact that there are a huge number of jobs that many women simply can't do due to their size and strength...and many more 'dirty jobs' that they just won't do. None of which (typically) have any educational requirements.

So the imbalance really isn't - and education isn't the solution to filling them if they no longer exist.

 
At 3/24/2011 12:29 PM, Blogger ErikZ said...

I stopped off at Autozone last night. Everyone that was working there was female.

 
At 3/24/2011 5:23 PM, Blogger Ron H. said...

"Still, payroll employment by gender is much closer now to the US population by gender."

Is this parity something that's desirable?

"Correct the education imbalance and you'll balance the workforce."

How would you recommend this be accomplished? Should men be given preference in admissions?

 
At 3/24/2011 5:25 PM, Blogger Doug said...

193.5 should be 1.935, yes? There's an easy economist joke in there, but I'll refrain since this is my first post.

 
At 3/25/2011 4:45 AM, Blogger Charles said...

One word - construction - explains a lot. Many unemployed men are collecting benefits and working in the underground economy.

 
At 3/25/2011 10:22 AM, Blogger Kevin Peterman said...

Don't miss the fact that there are a huge number of jobs that many women simply can't do due to their size and strength...and many more 'dirty jobs' that they just won't do.

BS. That's like saying there are jobs men can't do because they are not sensitive enough. One size doesn't fit all.

 
At 3/25/2011 10:23 AM, Blogger Kevin Peterman said...

"Is this parity something that's desirable?"

Apparently. Otherwise we wouldn't be reading articles about it.

 
At 3/25/2011 12:08 PM, Blogger Ron H. said...

Kevin

"Apparently. Otherwise we wouldn't be reading articles about it.

Actually, I was hoping for YOUR opinion on it, and perhaps your reasons for holding it, rather than the notion that it must be important because someone else told you it is.

I had also hoped you would suggest some remedies.

 
At 3/25/2011 12:34 PM, Blogger Mike said...

Kevin,
You speak as if you've never had to swing a sledge hammer, shovel rocks or bounce at a bar for 8-10 hours a day....and those are just 3 examples of jobs I've had and I've never seen a woman so much as come in for an application.
If you think emotional strength and physical strength are the same thing, well....I can't help you understand.

If you honestly believe what I said was BS, you should go outside more.

 

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