by: Daniel Massey
photo: "Job Growth", N.Y., N.Y.: A. Golden, eyewash design - c. 2006.
As the economy deteriorates, New York is catching up to the rest of the nation when it comes to job losses: the city's private sector employment fell by 17,000 over the last 12 months.For most of 2008, the city economy continued to show year-over-year job growth. The nation hemorrhaged jobs, but the city posted gains.
The November unemployment rate in the city jumped to 6.3% from 5.7%, the highest level in nearly four years.
Private sector employment in the city fell by 17,100, or 0.5%, for
the 12-month period that ended in November, the first month it has happened since February 2004, according to a report released Thursday by the New York State Department of Labor.
The city shed 20,900 private sector jobs in November, the largest one-month loss since 9/11, according to an analysis of Department of Labor data by Eastern Consolidated. The November losses wiped out all the job gains for the year, putting the net year-to-date private sector loss at 10,200.
“There’s no question the recession is here in full force at this point,” said James Parrott, an economist at the Fiscal Policy Institute. “And New York City is going to proceed to catch up to the bad news at the national level.”
Economists said the losses were even worse than the numbers suggested because November is typically a month when the city posts its strongest job gains due to seasonal hiring.
“What caught my eye more than the over-the-year loss was how badly we underperformed a normal November,” said James Brown, a State Department of Labor economist. “November is usually a good month for hiring.”
Monthly job declines were widespread across most industries, but heavily concentrated in the retail sector, with a loss of 4,900 jobs, according to Eastern Consolidated. Construction also took a hit, shedding 1,800 jobs. Even educational services, a usually reliable sector, posted a substantial loss, casting off 1,600 jobs.
Surprisingly, the securities industry lost only 1,400 jobs in November, but that’s likely because most Wall Street firms are waiting until the New Year to hand out pink slips, said Barbara Byrne Denham, chief economist at Eastern Consolidated. The state comptroller has said the city will lose 38,000 Wall Street jobs and 175,000 in all. Since peaking in September 2007, the securities industry has shed 17,800 jobs.
The rising job loss has caused more New Yorkers to file unemployment claims. Statewide, the number of initial claims rose 16% through November compared with a year ago, reaching 1,066,246. The 114,714 claims in November were up 6% over October.
The one bright spot in the report was health services, which added 1,000 jobs. Strength in key sectors like law, accounting and publishing had kept the city economy growing even while the nation was losing jobs. But the growth rate slowed in recent months, leading economists to expect grim news was on the way. That news arrived Thursday, and economists expect it to keep on coming. The Fiscal Policy Institute says the city will lose 10,000 jobs a month through the end of 2009.
"Layoffs Show on Unemployment Rolls." - N.Y. Times
"Wall Street's crisis could cost New York 225,000 jobs."- Reuters
"New York May Lose 225,000 Jobs, Comptroller Says" - LayoffBlog.com
LET THE REVOLUTION BEGIN!
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