Thursday, October 08, 2009

The "Man-Cession" Denials

In the last week, there have been a number of news reports that could be classified as “man-cession denials.” Here are some examples:

St. Louis -- A new St. Louis Fed research report released today debunks the popular notion that the current recession is predominantly a “man-cession”—a recession hurting American males proportionately more than women and other demographic groups.

Reuters -- The novelty of the man-cession has been overstated. Delve deeper, and men have not been doing so badly by historic standards.

CNBC-- Recessions are almost always man-cessions.

The data, certainly at least the male and female unemployment rates, suggest otherwise—the current “man-cession” is a very real and historically unprecedented labor market phenomenon, see the charts above and see the full analysis here at The Enterprise Blog.


At 10/08/2009 2:47 PM, Anonymous kevin said...

Let's see how many left wing loonies get bent out of shape about this!

At 10/08/2009 3:53 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Let's see how many left wing loonies get bent out of shape about this!

The left wing only cares about women. Why would they get bent out of shape about this?

At 10/08/2009 3:58 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would be interested in knowing if the male/female differences were sectoral. Not many female construction workers; not many (relatively) male nurses. If employment increases (or remains constant) in sectors that have more females, and decreases in sectors that have more males, obviously there would be a difference.

This is not left or right wing; it's about understanding if we have a sectoral shift. It may mean that we have longer term male unemployment and a greater need for job retraining into sectors that have more stability or a greater need.

Politics isn't everything.

At 10/08/2009 7:12 PM, Anonymous Fletcher said...

Well of course there's a sectoral component.

The sectors with the largest job losses have been construction, manufacturing, financial activities (including real estate), retail trade, wholesale trade, and leisure/hospitality. Growth is still only in education/health care, government, and in some places information or natural resources.

Sectoral job losses though are deceptive. Firms are classified into sectors and EVERYONE working for that firm is counted in that sector, regardless of job duties. So a secretary for a construction firm is Construction. A construction worker for a private university is education. An accountant for Sears is in Retail.

Still, the sectors which have lost the most jobs tend to employ mostly men. But have other recessions lost jobs in a different fashion? That's what the Fed is trying to argue. MJP is looking at individual data. Part of the explanation for women's lower wages is a preference for job security. I think this evidence bears that out. It's not so much a "man-cession" as it is a highly paid, risk taking, declining sector-cession.

I'm sure if you tortured the data long enough you'd find it was a Black-cession, Young-cession, Old-cession, Incompetencession, and I made out like a bandit during the boom and this is my comeuppance-cession. Looking at gender differences in unemployment is certainly informative, but characterizing this a Man-cession is belaboring the point.

It might be true that many women who lost their jobs left the labor force.

At 10/08/2009 7:57 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

I don't understand Dr Perry's obsession with this topic. As Rambo said "let it go". This dead horse has been beaten to death multiple times. More waterboarding? electrocution? Hanging? What gives?
Higher blog count?

At 10/08/2009 9:15 PM, Anonymous Penske said...

Economists often get wrapped up in the same tired rhetoric, right or wrong. The field has become highly specialized. People maintain areas of interest.

For a blog, there is time-saving from updating your old graphs instead of making new ones. Blogs also have themes which are necessarily repeated.

I'm less concerned about the repetition of mundane topics than the noticeable absence of previously repeated topics which disappear the moment they no longer tell the desired story. It's also frustrating to read fallacious arguments repeated long after numerous commenters have pointed out the obvious analytical flaws. Revise and resubmit!

At 10/08/2009 11:16 PM, Anonymous Tom said...

Of course, this recession has impacted men more than women. For some in the MSM to deny this only shows their liberal world view. Male dominated industries such as construction and manufacturing have been hit especially hard during this recession. Blacks probably have been impacted harder whites, but this doesn't negate the fact that men also have been hit harder than women.

Males being the "victim" in this recession doesn't sit well with liberal biases. If the MSM ever gets to write a story about the end of the world, the headline will be "End of the World - Minorities and Women to be impacted hardest."


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