The National Urban League’s January 2011 Employment Report shows economy gained a mere 36,000 jobs

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Highlights of the January 2011 Employment Report

(This brief detailed Report was put together by the National Urban League. The full report is available at the State of Urban Jobs website.) 


The economy gained a mere 36,000 jobs in January while private employment increased by 50,000.  These number pale in comparison to last month’s revised numbers of 121,000 net total job growth and 139,000 net private jobs (excluding government).  Since a recent low in February 2010, total payroll employment has increased by an average of 93,000 per month. The number of unemployed people in December fell to 13.9 million, while the labor force participation rate was essentially unchanged.

The unemployment rate fell to 9.0% in January, marking two consecutive months of decline.  The unemployment rate for whites declined (from 8.5% to 8.0%) as did the rate for Hispanics (from 13.0% to 11.9%).  The black unemployment rate was little changed at 15.7% (from 15.8%) – the unemployment rate for black men was 16.5% (unchanged); for black women 12.9% (from 13.2%). Rates of teen unemployment were 22.8% for whites (from 22.5%), 45.4% for African-Americans (from 44.2%) and 32.9% for Latinos (from 32.2%). The rate of underemployment (including the unemployed, marginally attached and those working part-time for economic reasons) was 16.1%, down from 16.7%.

The ranks of long-term unemployed (jobless for 27 weeks or more) decreased from December to January – now at 6.2 million or 43.8% of all unemployed (from 44.3%). However, there are 1.5 million people who have been unemployed for two years or longer.

Most of the job growth occurred in the manufacturing industry (+49,000) followed by professional and business services (+31,000), retail trade (+27,500) and education and health services (+13,000).  Construction (-32,000) experienced the most private losses in January Local government (-10,000) contributed the most to total government losses.

The January 2011 Employment report is available at the State of Urban Jobs website.

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