The Conference Board uses cookies to improve our website, enhance your experience, and deliver relevant messages and offers about our products. Detailed information on the use of cookies on this site is provided in our cookie policy. For more information on how The Conference Board collects and uses personal data, please visit our privacy policy. By continuing to use this Site or by clicking "OK", you consent to the use of cookies. 

CHARTS

Job growth continues to slow, impact varies by sector

The economy added 661,000 jobs in September, marking the first time since the pandemic started that job gains have fallen below one million. Although the pace of the labor market recovery is generally slowing, certain sectors are recovering faster than others. Hiring remains depressed in service industries that continue to suffer under social distancing, such as entertainment, travel, lodging, full-service restaurants, and childcare. Furthermore, state and local government revenue shortfalls due to the pandemic have led to continued job cuts in the public sector, especially in education.

Consumption of goods, especially durable goods, has been booming due to people’s inability or fear of consuming in-person services. As a result, employment growth was better than average in industries related to the production, storage, sales, and delivery of goods. Retail was an exception, as some retail industries experienced a large drop in employment because of the accelerated shift to online shopping. The surprisingly strong activity in residential real estate, partly due to historically low interest rates, led to an unusually low drop in construction employment in this recession. Finally, deepening home-centric lifestyles have fueled employment in grocery stores and supercenters, and the ability to work from home has saved many professional jobs. A downside risk is the potential for furloughs to translate into permanent layoffs. Indeed, an uptick in layoff announcements, especially in the airline and municipal government sectors, portend this possibility.

Support Our Work

Support our nonpartisan, nonprofit research and insights which help leaders address societal challenges.

Donate

FILTER BY CENTER

Our Experts

Thought leaders who provide trusted insights for navigating companies and the economy though COVID-19.

BartVanArk1.jpg

Bart van Ark

Senior Advisor

LynnFranco1.jpg

Lynn Franco

Director, Economic Indicators and Surveys

Ataman.jpg

Ataman Ozyildirim, PhD

Director, Economic Research, and Global Research Chair

MatteoTonello.jpg

Matteo Tonello

Managing Director, Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG)

GadLevanon.jpg

Gad Levanon, PhD

Vice President, Labor Markets

DavidHoffman1.jpg

David Hoffman

Senior Vice President Asia and Managing Director of the China Center for Economics & Business

Ray, Rebecca 120 x 120.jpg

Rebecca L. Ray, PhD

Executive Vice President, Human Capital

Schrader, Anke 120x120.jpg

Anke Schrader

Research Director, the China Center for Economics and Business

AmyAbel.jpg

Amy Lui Abel, PhD

Vice President, Human Capital Research

ThomasSinger.jpg

Thomas Singer

Principal Researcher

Uwe-Portrait-120x120.jpg

Dr. Uwe G. Schulte

Leader, Global Sustainability Centre and Program Director

Washington.jpg

Paul Washington

Executive Director, ESG Center

IlariaMaselli.jpg

Ilaria Maselli

Senior Economist

rsz_popiela__amanda.jpg

Amanda Popiela

Researcher, Human Capital

ElizabethCrofoot.jpg

Elizabeth Crofoot

Senior Economist, Labor Markets

JohnForsyth.jpg

John Forsyth

Leader of the Consumer Dynamics Institute

CindyCisneros.jpg

Cindy Cisneros

Vice President of Education Programs

Odland, Steve 120x120.jpg

Steve Odland

President and CEO

JeffHoffman.jpg

Jeff Hoffman

Institute Leader, Corporate Citizenship & Philanthropy, ESG Center

JoeMinarik.jpg

Joseph J. Minarik

Senior Vice President and Director of Research

ErickLundh.jpg

Erik Lundh

Senior Economist

RobinEriksen.jpg

Robin Erickson, PhD

Principal Researcher

JP.jpg

JP Kuehlwein

Marketing Institute Leader

DeniseDahlhoff.jpg

Denise Dahlhoff, PhD

Senior Researcher, Consumer Research

Sabattini, Laura 120x120.jpg

Laura Sabattini, PhD

Principal Researcher, Human Capital

Schwarz Robert.JPG

Robert Schwarz

Senior Researcher, ESG Center

Chiqui.jpg

Chiqui Cartagena

Chief Marketing Officer & Center Leader, Marketing & Communications

Dr. Mahdy Al Jazzaf1.png

Dr. Mahdy Al Jazzaf

Executive Director

DevinOConnor.jpg

Devin O’Connor

Deputy Director, Economic Research

OTHER RELATED CONTENT