March 2009 Jobs Report and Wages

Here are the job market and compensation numbers for March 2009 (based on the job report):

loss of 663,000 jobs in the month 
(revised to a final loss of 753,000)

  • Analysts expected a loss of 660,000
  • Fifteen straight months of job losses
    • 5.1 million jobs lost since December, 2007
      • 3.3 Millions in the last 5 months alone
  • January was revised to loss of 741,000 jobs (revised to a final loss of 779,000)
  • February was revised to a loss of 651,000 jobs (revised to a final loss of 726,000)
  • Long term unemployed increased 3.2 million persons
  • The first quarter of 2009 alone would account for the fourth worst year of job losses since 1939

Unemployment rate rose to 8.5%

  • Analysts predicted a rise to 8.5%
  • Over the last 12 months the rate has risen 3.4%
  • Highest since 1983
  • Underemployment is now at 15.6%
  • From 13.9% in January (an increase of 1.7% in two months!)

Specific Segment Job numbers:

  • Manufacturing lost 161,000 jobs
  • Construction lost 126,000 jobs
  • Retailers lost 48,000
  • Temporary Work lost 72,000 jobs
  • Leisure and Hospitality Services lost 40,000 jobs
  • Government sector loss 5,000
  • Health care grew by 14,000 jobs
    • Averaged 17,000 jobs in Q1 of 2009
    • The average in Q1 of 2008 was 30,000


  • The average weekly paycheck is $614.20
    • A decrease of $0.85
  • The average hourly work week dropped 0.1 to 33.2

Bureau of Labor Statistics

Job Report Stats Summary

About benleeson
My name is Ben Leeson. I currently work for a large financial company in IT. I went to school at Marist College in Poughkeepsie, NY. I graduated with a B.S. in Business Administration concentrating in HR. Professor William Brown taught me and I enjoyed his classes; even acquiring an appreciation for just about all things HR. I didn’t pursue a job in that field after college but I’ve kept up with it. This blog will further my fascination with all things HR. I hope to grow my knowledge of the area through thoughtful writings and spirited feedback. I will attempt to have a fairly routine style so anyone reading can come to expect certain segments. Please excuse my incorrect grammar and occasional misspelling.

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