According to an Institute for Women’s Policy Research (IWPR)
of the November employment report from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), women gained 158,000 jobs and men gained 113,000 for a total of 271,000 jobs added in October. The overall unemployment rate declined to 5.0 percent in October from 5.1 percent in September.
In October, women’s employment growth was strong in Educational and Health Services (55,000 jobs gained by women), Retail Trade (50,000 jobs gained by women), and Professional and Business Services (39,000 jobs gained by women). However women lost jobs in Construction (2,000 jobs lost by women), Other Services (2,000 jobs lost by women), and Transportation and Warehousing (1,800 jobs lost by women). Men’s employment growth was strong in Professional and Business Services (39,000 jobs gained by men), Leisure and Hospitality Services (34,000 jobs gained by men), Construction (33,000 jobs gained by men), and Other Services (12,000 jobs gained by men). However, men’s employment declined in Retail Trade (6,200 jobs lost by men), Mining and Logging (3,000 jobs lost by men), Nondurable Goods Manufacturing (3,000 jobs lost by men), Durable Goods Manufacturing (2,000 jobs lost by men), and Government (2,000 jobs lost by men).
In the last year, from October 2014 to October 2015, of the 2.8 million jobs added to payrolls, more than half were filled by women (52 percent or 1,475,00 jobs) and slightly less than half were filled by men (48 percent or 1,339,000 jobs). Between October 2014 and October 2015 women’s job gains were strongest in Education and Health Services (505,000 jobs added for women), Professional and Business Services (321,000 jobs added for women), Retail Trade (190,000 jobs added for women), and Leisure and Hospitality (172,000 jobs added for women). Men’s job gains were strongest in Professional and Business Services (343,000 jobs added for men), Leisure and Hospitality (261,000 jobs added for men), Construction (219,000 jobs added for men), and Retail Trade (123,400 jobs added for men). However, men lost 98,000 jobs in Mining and Logging during the past year.
According to the household survey data reported by the BLS, the unemployment rate for women aged 16 and older decreased to 4.9 percent in October from 5.0 percent in September. The unemployment rate for men aged 16 and older remained steady at 5.1 percent in September and October. Among workers aged 20 and older, unemployment is higher among black women and men (8.1 percent and 9.2 percent, respectively) and Hispanic women and men (6.4 percent and 5.1 percent, respectively) compared with white women and men (3.9 percent and 4.1 percent, respectively). Among single mothers (female heads of households), the unemployment rate increased to 7.5 percent in October from 7.1 percent in September. Unemployment for single mothers is substantially lower than its peak five years ago, 13.4 percent in July and August 2010. The unemployment rate for single mothers is not seasonally adjusted and can fluctuate due to small sample sizes in the household survey.
The overall labor force participation rate remained steady at 62.4 percent in September and October. Women’s labor force participation rate increased to 56.5 percent in October from 56.4 percent in September, and remains 2.9 percentage points lower than the 59.4 percent rate in December 2007, at the start of the Great Recession. Men’s labor force participation rate remained steady at 68.7 percent in September and October, 4.4 percentage points lower than the 73.1 percent rate in December 2007.
As of October, 7.9 million workers remain unemployed and, of these, 2.1 million (26.8 percent) have been unemployed for 27 weeks or longer, usually referred to as the long-term unemployed. This share has declined by 5.1 percentage points in the past year, from 31.9 percent in October 2014. An additional 5.8 million workers are working part-time in October for reasons such as slack work or unfavorable business conditions, inability to find full-time work, or seasonal declines in demand. In the past year just over 1.2 million fewer workers report involuntary part-time work for these reasons, a substantial decline from 7.0 million in October 2014.