Labor Seal NYS Department of Labor                          

Contact Leo Rosales Cell: 518-281-6167 Office: 518-457-5519 Email: leo.rosales@labor.ny.gov www.labor.ny.gov
NEW YORK'S RECESSION DEEPENED IN LATE 2008
Highest Annual Unemployment Rate Since 2004

Albany, NY (March 05, 2009) - Newly revised job data show New York State's private sector job count, after seasonal adjustment, peaked at 7,314,200 in August 2008, the State Labor Department reported today. From August 2008 to December 2008, the private sector count declined rapidly, resulting in a loss of 111,300 private sector jobs. To put this loss in perspective, New York State added just over 400,000 private sector jobs between the end of the last recession in the state (July 2003) and the most recent peak (August 2008). In the last four months of 2008, more than 25 percent of these job gains were eliminated. (A graph depicting the rate of job losses in New York State during recent recessions is available here.)

New York State's private sector employment count averaged 7,282,700 in 2008, up 49,700, or 0.7 percent, from 2007 (not seasonally adjusted). By comparison, private sector jobs in the nation decreased by 0.7 percent between 2007 and 2008. Over the same period, total nonfarm jobs (private plus public sectors) in the state increased by 60,900, or 0.7 percent, while the number of U.S. nonfarm jobs dropped by 0.4 percent.

Conditions in the state's labor market deteriorated rapidly toward the end of 2008. As recently as the third quarter of 2008, the state was adding almost 70,000 private sector jobs (+0.9 percent) on a year-over-year basis. However, in the fourth quarter of 2008, the state lost more than 40,000 jobs (-0.6 percent) compared with the same period one year ago.

"Data released today continue to underscore the severity of the steadily deepening recession in New York State. In just the last four months of 2008, the state has lost more than 110,000 private sector jobs, while the annual statewide unemployment rate has now climbed to a four-year high," said Peter A. Neenan, Ph.D., director of the Division of Research and Statistics.

Jobs data are revised at the end of each year for all states and the nation, as more comprehensive information, or benchmarks, become available from employers' unemployment insurance tax records. The benchmark process resulted in revisions to all jobs data back to April 2007. March 2008 is the "reference month" and is the latest month for which employment estimates will not be revised in the future. Estimates for April 2008 and later are still subject to revision in the next round of annual revisions in early 2010.

Monthly resident labor force data, including unemployment rates, are also revised at the end of each year as part of the normal, annual end-of-year benchmarking process, following procedures specified by the U. S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. After revision, the annual statewide unemployment rate increased from 4.5 percent in 2007 to 5.4 percent in 2008, its highest annual level since 2004. Certain monthly rates in 2008 underwent relatively large revisions; the largest revision occurred in December 2008, where the rate dropped from 7.0 percent to 6.6 percent (seasonally adjusted).

Job data for metropolitan areas (not seasonally adjusted): 2007-2008
Area job growth data for 2007 and 2008 are shown in the table below. Four of the state's thirteen metropolitan areas -- Albany-Schenectady-Troy, Buffalo-Niagara Falls, Glens Falls, and Rochester -- experienced relatively stronger private sector job performance in 2008 than in 2007.

Between 2007 and 2008, the annual average private sector job count increased in nine metropolitan areas, decreased in three, and was unchanged in one. Private sector employment grew fastest in Ithaca (+1.3 percent), New York City (+1.3 percent), Glen Falls (+0.9 percent), and Buffalo-Niagara Falls (+0.7 percent). Private sector jobs declined over the year in Kingston (-1.4 percent), Poughkeepsie-Newburgh-Middletown (-0.5 percent), and Utica-Rome (-0.5 percent) over the same period.

Within the 10-county Downstate region, growth in both the private sector and total nonfarm job counts slowed between 2007 and 2008. Similarly, growth in both the private sector and total nonfarm job counts slowed in the 52-county Upstate region from 2007 to 2008.

 

Percent Change in Annual Average Job Counts:
United States, New York State, Regions, and Metropolitan Areas
2006-2007 and 2007-2008
 
  Total Nonfarm   Private Sector
  2006-2007   2007-2008   2006-2007   2007-2008
 
United States 1.1%   -0.4%   1.1%   -0.7%
New York State 1.3%   0.7%   1.4%   0.7%
 
   Regions  
Downstate (10-county area) 1.9%   0.9%   2.1%   0.9%
      New York City 2.1%   1.2%   2.4%   1.3%
      Suburban Counties 1.5%   0.2%   1.4%   0.1%
Upstate (52-county area) 0.5%   0.4%   0.4%   0.3%
      Metro Areas 0.4%   0.4%   0.3%   0.3%
      Non-metro Counties 0.9%   0.3%   0.8%   0.2%
 
   Metropolitan Areas  
Albany-Schenectady-Troy 0.5%   0.4%   0.3%   0.5%
Binghamton 1.0%   0.3%   0.9%   0.1%
Buffalo-Niagara Falls 0.3%   0.8%   0.1%   0.7%
Glens Falls 0.5%   0.4%   0.0%   0.9%
Ithaca 1.4%   1.1%   1.3%   1.3%
Kingston 0.3%   -0.8%   0.4%   -1.4%
Nassau-Suffolk* 1.3%   0.0%   1.3%   0.0%
New York City* 2.1%   1.2%   2.4%   1.3%
Poughkeepsie-Newburgh-Middletown 0.0%   -0.1%   0.0%   -0.5%
Putnam-Rockland-Westchester* 1.7%   0.5%   1.7%   0.4%
Rochester 0.4%   0.4%   0.3%   0.4%
Syracuse 0.7%   0.4%   0.7%   0.2%
Utica-Rome 0.5%   -0.1%   0.0%   -0.5%
*Denotes Downstate areas

 

Job data by industry: 2007-2008
Statewide industry job growth data for 2007 and 2008 are presented in the table below. Educational and health services added the most jobs (+32,000) of any major industry group between 2007 and 2008, with gains centered in health care and social assistance (+21,200). Professional and business services gained 18,500 jobs. Other industry groups adding jobs over the year included (in descending order): leisure and hospitality; construction; other services; and natural resources and mining. Government also added jobs (+11,200) between 2007 and 2008.

Manufacturing experienced the largest employment decline, shedding 19,000 jobs between 2007 and 2008. Manufacturing losses were centered in non-durable goods (-10,600), specifically chemical manufacturing (-3,000). The job loss in durable goods (-8,400) was concentrated in transportation equipment manufacturing (-2,800). Other industries that lost jobs between 2007 and 2008 included: financial activities; information; and trade, transportation and utilities.

 

Change in Annual Average Jobs by Industry:
New York State, 2007-2008
(data in thousands)
 
  Annual Average Jobs   Net   Percent
  2007   2008   Change   Change
 
Total Nonfarm 8,734.0   8,794.9   60.9   0.7%
Private Sector 7,233.0   7,282.7   49.7   0.7%
  Natural Resources & Mining 6.2   6.3   0.1   1.6%
  Construction 352.2   360.1   7.9   2.2%
  Manufacturing 553.1   534.1   -19.0   -3.4%
     Durable Goods 326.2   317.8   -8.4   -2.6%
     Non-durable Goods 226.9   216.3   -10.6   -4.7%
  Trade, Trans. & Utilities 1,524.9   1,524.3   -0.6   0.0%
     Wholesale Trade 356.5   352.5   -4.0   -1.1%
     Retail Trade 894.3   896.7   2.4   0.3%
     Transp., Warehousing & Utilities 274.1   275.1   1.0   0.4%
  Information 264.2   263.3   -0.9   -0.3%
  Financial Activities 731.1   722.4   -8.7   -1.2%
  Professional & Business Services 1,138.3   1,156.8   18.5   1.6%
  Educational & Health Services 1,599.2   1,631.2   32.0   2.0%
     Educational Services 365.4   376.2   10.8   3.0%
     Health Care & Social Assistance 1,233.8   1,255.0   21.2   1.7%
  Leisure & Hospitality 701.1   715.6   14.5   2.1%
  Other Services 362.8   368.5   5.7   1.6%
Government 1,501.0   1,512.2   11.2   0.7%

 

JANUARY 2009 JOB NUMBERS

New York State's private sector job count decreased over the month by 14,600, or 0.2 percent, to 7,188,300 in January 2009 (seasonally adjusted), the State Labor Department reported today. New York State's unemployment rate, after seasonal adjustment, increased from 6.6 percent in December 2008 to 7.0 percent in January 2009. The nation's rate also increased over the same period, from 7.2 percent in December 2008 to 7.6 percent in January 2009. New York City's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate decreased from 7.0 percent in December 2008 to 6.9 percent in January 2009.

From January 2008 to January 2009, the number of private sector jobs in New York State decreased by 114,900, or 1.6 percent, to 7,025,700 (not seasonally adjusted). Over the same period, the nation's private sector job count decreased twice as fast (-3.2 percent).

Note: When comparing different months, seasonally adjusted data provide the most valid comparison, for example, December 2008 versus January 2009. Non-seasonally adjusted data are valuable in year-to-year comparisons of the same month, for example, January 2008 versus January 2009.

1.) Unemployment rates (seasonally adjusted):

The table below presents unemployment rates for New York State, the United States, New York City and the balance of state region (NYS-NYC). New York State's unemployment rate, after seasonal adjustment, was 7.0 percent in January 2009, up from 6.6 percent in December 2008. In January 2008, the state's rate was 4.7 percent. This 2.3 percentage point over-the-year increase in the unemployment rate is the largest on record (data extend back to 1976). The nation's rate was 7.6 percent in January 2009, up from 7.2 percent in December. In January 2008, the nation's rate was 4.9 percent. In New York City, the rate was 6.9 percent in January 2009, down from 7.0 percent in December. In January 2008, the city's rate was 4.8 percent. The rate for New York State outside of New York City increased from 6.2 percent in December 2008 to 7.0 percent in January 2009, its highest level since October 1992.

    Unemployment Rates (seasonally adjusted)
     
Statistical Range**
   
    January 2009* January 2009 December 2008 January 2008
  New York State 7.0 6.5-7.5 6.6 4.7
  United States 7.6 --- 7.2 4.9
  New York City 6.9 6.1-7.7 7.0 4.8
  NYS, excluding NYC 7.0 6.5-7.5 6.2 4.7
  *Data are preliminary and subject to change.
  **90% confidence interval.

2.) Unemployment Insurance and EUC08 data (not seasonally adjusted):

Under the Regular Unemployment Insurance (Regular UI) program, individuals who are involuntarily unemployed through no fault of their own may be eligible for up to 26 weeks of benefits as long as they remain ready, willing and able to work, and are actively seeking employment. Under the temporary federal Emergency Unemployment Compensation (EUC08) program, enacted on June 30, 2008, as part of the Economic Stimulus Act of 2008, claimants who have exhausted their 26 weeks of regular benefits may receive up to 13 weeks of additional benefits. Federal legislation was signed into law on November 21, 2008, providing for an additional seven weeks of EUC08 benefits, increasing the maximum duration to 20 weeks under this program. Monthly beneficiary data for these two programs are noted below.

  
Program and Data Item* January 2009 December 2008 January 2008
Regular UI, monthly beneficiaries
379,664
307,262
238,751
Regular UI, year-to-date beneficiaries
379,664
707,159
238,751
EUC08, monthly beneficiaries
146,764
134,425
NA
EUC08, year-to-date beneficiaries
146,764
177,108
NA
 
*Source: UI data from select UI including all programs, OSR, and Shared Work. EUC08 data are from the monthly report, including UI, UCFE, UCX, and OSR.

3.) Job data (seasonally adjusted):

New York State and the nation, December 2008 - January 2009:

From December 2008 to January 2009, the number of seasonally adjusted private sector jobs in New York State decreased by 14,600, or 0.2 percent, to 7,188,300. Nationally, the number of private sector jobs decreased by 0.5 percent between December 2008 and January 2009. From December 2008 to January 2009, seasonally adjusted total nonfarm employment in New York State decreased by 18,500, or 0.2 percent, to 8,695,000. Nationally, the number of total nonfarm jobs decreased by 0.4 percent over the same period.

4.) Nonfarm jobs since January 2008 (not seasonally adjusted):
  Total nonfarm jobs   -113,400
  Private sector jobs   -114,900

Since January 2008, the number of nonfarm jobs in New York State decreased by 113,400, or 1.3 percent, and the number of private sector jobs decreased by 114,900, or 1.6 percent. Nationally, the number of nonfarm jobs decreased by 2.6 percent and the number of private sector jobs decreased by 3.2 percent between January 2008 and January 2009.

Educational and health services (+32,600) added the most jobs of any industry over the January 2008-January 2009 period, with gains centered in health care and social assistance (+20,300). Sector gains in leisure and hospitality (+3,900) were focused in accommodation and food services (+2,400). Other industries adding jobs over the year included other services and government.

Trade, transportation and utilities (-48,100) experienced the largest over-the-year decline in jobs. Losses were split between retail trade (-25,000) and wholesale trade (-14,900). Other industries experiencing declines included: manufacturing; financial activities; professional and business services; construction; information; and natural resources and mining.

Industries with Job Gains:
  Educational & Health Services   +32,600
  Leisure & Hospitality   +3,900
  Other Services   +3,800
  Government   +1,500
Industries with Job Losses:
  Trade, Transportation & Utilities   -48,100
  Manufacturing   -34,900
  Financial Activities   -24,300
  Professional & Business Services   -22,500
  Construction   -20,400
  Information   -4,900
  Natural Resources & Mining   -100
 

 

5.) Nonfarm jobs since December 2008 (not seasonally adjusted):
  Total nonfarm jobs   -295,500
  Private sector jobs   -258,600

In January 2009, New York State had 8,522,600 total nonfarm jobs, including 7,025,700 private sector jobs. From December 2008 to January 2009, the number of nonfarm jobs decreased by 295,500 and the number of private sector jobs decreased by 258,600. Typically, both the total nonfarm and the private sector job counts decrease between December and January. On average, in the previous ten years, the number of nonfarm jobs in New York decreased by 294,800 from December to January, and the number of private sector jobs decreased by 263,800.

The job count (not seasonally adjusted) decreased in all major sectors between December 2008 and January 2009: trade, transportation and utilities (-67,400); educational and health services (-41,600); professional and business services (-38,800); government (-36,900); leisure and hospitality (-33,900); construction (-30,600); manufacturing (-18,600); financial activities (-12,000); information (-7,900); other services (-6,900); and natural resources and mining (-900).

6.) New York State nonfarm job highlights since December 2008 (not seasonally adjusted):

Natural resources and mining
Natural resources and mining sector employment dropped seasonally.

Other services
Over-the-month job losses were centered in religious, grantmaking, civic, professional and similar organizations.

Information
This month's loss in information sector employment was focused in motion picture and sound recording.

Financial activities
Losses in the financial activities sector were largest in finance and insurance, particularly securities, commodity contracts and other financial activities.

Manufacturing
Manufacturing employment decreased over the month, with both the durable and non-durable goods sectors experiencing job losses in January.

Construction
Construction sector employment decreased seasonally, especially in specialty trade contractors.

Leisure and hospitality
Over-the-month declines in leisure and hospitality sector employment were centered in accommodation and food services.

Government
Seasonal decreases at public elementary and secondary schools, part of local government, accounted for most of the over-the-month loss in government jobs. Many hourly employees such as bus drivers and cafeteria workers are not paid during vacation breaks.

Professional and business services
Losses in professional and business services were centered in administrative and support services.

Educational and health services
Sector employment decreased over the month due mainly to seasonal losses at private colleges, universities and professional schools.

Trade, transportation and utilities
Most of this month's employment decrease reflected seasonal losses in wholesale and retail trade.

7.) Metropolitan Areas:

Job Growth and Unemployment Rates (not seasonally adjusted):

Albany-Schenectady-Troy: Since January 2008, the number of nonfarm jobs has decreased by 8,400, or 1.9 percent, and the number of private sector jobs has decreased by 6,400, or 1.9 percent. The area's unemployment rate was 7.1 percent in January 2009, compared with 5.9 in December and 5.1 in January 2008.

Binghamton: Since January 2008, the number of nonfarm jobs has decreased by 1,200, or 1.1 percent, and the number of private sector jobs has decreased by 1,300, or 1.5 percent. The area's unemployment rate was 8.5 percent in January 2009, compared with 7.1 in December and 5.8 in January 2008.

Buffalo-Niagara Falls: Since January 2008, the number of nonfarm jobs has decreased by 4,600, or 0.9 percent, and the number of private sector jobs has decreased by 6,100, or 1.4 percent. The area's unemployment rate was 9.0 percent in January 2009, compared with 7.1 in December and 6.3 in January 2008.

Glens Falls: Since January 2008, the number of nonfarm jobs has decreased by 800, or 1.5 percent, and the number of private sector jobs has decreased by 400, or 1.0 percent. The area's unemployment rate was 9.3 percent in January 2009, compared with 7.7 in December and 6.3 in January 2008.

Ithaca: Since January 2008, the number of nonfarm jobs decreased by 200, or 0.3 percent, and the number of private sector jobs has decreased by 200, or 0.4 percent. The area's unemployment rate was 5.6 percent in January 2009, compared with 4.6 in December and 4.0 in January 2008.

Kingston: Since January 2008, the number of nonfarm jobs has decreased by 1,200, or 2.0 percent, and the number of private sector jobs has decreased by 1,500, or 3.2 percent. The area's unemployment rate was 7.8 percent in January 2009, compared with 6.5 in December and 5.7 in January 2008.

Nassau-Suffolk: Since January 2008, the number of nonfarm jobs has decreased by 23,400, or 1.9 percent, and the number of private sector jobs has decreased by 23,200, or 2.2 percent. The area's unemployment rate was 6.9 percent in January 2009, compared with 5.8 in December and 4.6 in January 2008.

New York City (five boroughs): Since January 2008, the number of nonfarm jobs has decreased by 59,900, or 1.6 percent, and the number of private sector jobs has decreased by 57,300, or 1.8 percent. The area's unemployment rate was 7.3 percent in January 2009, compared with 7.2 in December and 5.3 in January 2008.

Poughkeepsie-Newburgh-Middletown: Since January 2008, the number of nonfarm jobs has decreased by 2,900, or 1.2 percent, and the number of private sector jobs has decreased by 3,300, or 1.7 percent. The area's unemployment rate was 7.4 percent in January 2009, compared with 6.2 in December and 5.0 in January 2008.

Rochester: Since January 2008, the number of nonfarm jobs has decreased by 500, or 0.1 percent, and the number of private sector jobs has decreased by 1,400, or 0.3 percent. The area's unemployment rate was 8.0 percent in January 2009, compared with 6.7 in December and 5.7 in January 2008.

Syracuse: Since January 2008, the number of nonfarm jobs has decreased by 1,000, or 0.3 percent, and the number of private sector jobs has decreased by 2,000, or 0.8 percent. The area's unemployment rate was 8.3 percent in January 2009, compared with 6.9 in December and 5.7 in January 2008.

Utica-Rome: Since January 2008, the number of nonfarm jobs has decreased by 700, or 0.5 percent, and the number of private sector jobs has decreased by 1,100, or 1.1 percent. The area's unemployment rate was 8.3 percent in January 2009, compared with 6.9 in December and 6.1 in January 2008.

Note: Labor force statistics, including the unemployment rate, for New York and every other state are based on statistical regression models specified by the U. S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Jobs data for New York are obtained from a survey of 18,000 business establishments. Jobs data exclude agricultural workers, the self-employed, unpaid family workers and domestic workers in private households.

See State and Area Job Data

See State and Area Unemployment Rates

Jobs and Unemployment Fact Sheet

Labor Market Overview