Overall Unemployment Rate Steady; Tech Employment Up; Communications Employment Down

June 1, 2012. The Department of Labor's (DOL) Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released employment data for the U.S. for the month of May, 2012.

The BLS stated in a release that "Both the number of unemployed persons (12.7 million) and the unemployment rate (8.2 percent) changed little in May." (Parentheses in original.)

The BLS added that "The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks and over) rose from 5.1 to 5.4 million in May. These individuals accounted for 42.8 percent of the unemployed." (Parentheses in original.)

The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee (HOGRC) will hold a hearing on June 6, 2012, at 9:30 AM titled "Addressing Concerns about the Integrity of the U.S. Department of Labor's Jobs Reporting". See, notice.

The BLS's estimate of the unemployment rate has been about 8.2 percent for months. See, story titled "BLS Employment Data Shows Downward Trend in Communications and Upward Trend in IT" in TLJ Daily E-Mail Alert No. 2,366, April 9, 2012.

Table B-1 attached to the BLS report reveals employment trends in various industry sectors, including information and communications technology (ICT) sectors.

The table below contains ICT related excerpts from the BLS table titled "Table B-1. Employees on nonfarm payrolls by industry sector and selected industry detail". This is the seasonally adjusted data.

Table: Total Number of Employees in Thousands by ICT Industry Sector
  Computer & peripheral equipment 157.6 163.4 164.3 164.3
  Communication equipment 116.1 110.7 109.7 109.5
  Semiconductors & electronic comp. 383.2 387.6 387.0 389.0
  Electronic instruments 404.3 403.2 402.9 402.9
Information Services:        
  Publishing industries, except Internet 749.1 740.9 740.3 739.7
  Motion picture & sound recording 361.7 360.2 364.9 364.9
  Broadcasting, except Internet 281.9 282.2 282.0 282.2
  Telecommunications 878.2 838.6 835.5 833.5
  Data processing, hosting & related serv. 244.2 241.7 240.9 240.6
  Other information services 156.2 167.6 166.4 166.6
Professional Services:        
  Legal services 1,115.1 1,115.8 1,119.3 1,119.9
  Computer systems design & related serv. 1,523.9 1,576.5 1,581.1 1,586.4
Source: BLS, June 1, 2012 employment report, Table B-1.

This latest ICT employment data shows that trends, reported in previous TLJ stories, continue. That is, employment in both telecommunications services and equipment manufacturing is declining. Employment in manufacturing of both computers and peripheral equipment and semiconductors and electrical components is increasing. Also, employment in computer systems design and related services continues to grow.

Also, if one examines overall ICT data, employment is increasing. Gains in tech are greater than loses in communications.

See also, previous TLJ stories: