- March 5, 2010
Unemployment Rate Unchanged At 9.7% For February
The BLS said that the unemployment rate was unchanged at 9.7% in February with 36,000 non-farm payroll jobs lost. Construction and IT were the big losers. Construction in particular lost 64,000 and has lost 1.9 million jobs since the recession started in December 2007. IT lost 18,000 in February and has lost 297,000 since December 2007. Temporary help was the big winner adding 48,000 in February. Health care also continued to trend upward.
Unfortunately, 8.4 million people lost their jobs during the recession that started in December, 2007. In 2009 alone 4.1 million lost their jobs! How bad is it? Employers would need to add 400,000 net new jobs per month for the next 3 years to fully recover from the effects of this recession! Unfortunately, that’s not projected to happen. For example, the president’s first official economic report projects employers adding only 95,000 jobs a month this year. Then adding about 190,000 jobs per month in 2011 and 251,000 a month in 2012. At that rate, unemployment won’t reach 5% this decade!
Newspaper and online help wanted ads only show as little as 20% of the available openings. Many hidden job openings are filled through employee referrals. That is why I recommend networking to uncover a job. I recommend two types of networking: a) actual and b) virtual (e.g. using social media sites like LinkedIn).
My mantra remains, “Think Small” as in small businesses, which have created 64% of the net new jobs in the last 15 years! Unfortunately, start-ups continue to struggle due to a lack of funding. More needs to be done to provide SBA loans, which continue to be only 1% of the overall money lent to small companies!