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Economic News Release
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Displaced Workers Summary

For release 10:00 a.m. (EDT) Thursday, August 26, 2010           USDL-10-1174

Technical information: (202) 691-6378  *  cpsinfo@bls.gov  *  www.bls.gov/cps
Media contact:         (202) 691-5902  *  PressOffice@bls.gov


                        WORKER DISPLACEMENT: 2007-2009


From January 2007 through December 2009, 6.9 million workers were displaced
from jobs they had held for at least 3 years, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Sta-
tistics reported today. This was nearly twice as many as were displaced for
the survey period covering January 2005 to December 2007. In January 2010,
about half of displaced workers were reemployed, down from about two-thirds
for the prior survey in January 2008. The more recent period includes the 
recession that began in December 2007. In contrast, the prior survey covered
a period of employment growth and declining unemployment. //DISP ZUNI3PO Test 11/2/2020//

Since 1984, the Employment and Training Administration of the U.S. Department
of Labor has sponsored surveys that collect information on  workers who were
displaced from their jobs. These surveys have been conducted biennially as
supplements to the Current Population Survey (CPS), a monthly survey of house-
holds that is the primary source of information on the nation's labor force.

Displaced workers are defined as persons 20 years of age and older who lost
or left jobs because their plant or company closed or moved, there was insuf-
ficient work for them to do, or their position or shift was abolished. The
period covered in this study was 2007-09, the 3 calendar years prior to the
January 2010 survey date. The following analysis focuses primarily on the 6.9
million persons who had worked for their employer for 3 or more years at the
time of displacement (referred to as long-tenured). An additional 8.5 million
persons were displaced from jobs they had held for less than 3 years (referred
to as short-tenured). Combining the short- and long-tenured groups, the number
of displaced workers totaled 15.4 million from 2007-09, up from 8.3 million 
for the period covered by the prior survey (2005-07).

Highlights from the January 2010 survey include:

   --In January 2010, 49 percent of the 6.9 million long-tenured displaced
     workers were reemployed, down from 67 percent for the prior survey in
     January 2008. This is lowest reemployment rate on record for the series,
     which began in 1984. (See table 1.)

   --Forty-three percent of long-tenured displaced workers cited insuffi-
     cient work as the reason for their displacement, up from 24 percent
     for the previous survey. (See table 2.)

   --Nearly 1 in 4 long-tenured displaced workers lost a job in manufac-
     turing. (See table 4.)

   --Among long-tenured workers who were displaced from full-time wage
     and salary jobs and who were reemployed in such jobs, 45 percent had
     earnings that were as much or more than those on the lost job. This
     was lower than the proportion in January 2008, when 55 percent of 
     those workers had earnings equal to or greater than those on the lost
     job. (See table 7.)

Characteristics of the Reemployed

Forty-nine percent of the 6.9 million long-tenured displaced workers were re-
employed at the time of the survey in January 2010, down from 67 percent for
the January 2008 survey. The proportion unemployed at the time of the most
recent survey, 36 percent, was double the proportion in January 2008 (18 per-
cent). Fifteen percent of long-tenured displaced workers were not in the labor
force in January 2010, the same as in the previous survey. (See table 1.)

In January 2010, reemployment rates for workers ages 20 to 24 and 25 to 54
were 55 and 53 percent, respectively. Reemployment rates for older workers--
ages 55 to 64 and 65 years and over--were 39 and 23 percent, respectively.
Among most age groups, displaced workers were less likely to be employed and
more likely to be unemployed than they were in the prior survey. Among those
age 65 and over, 45 percent were no longer in the labor force when surveyed in
January 2010, down from 69 percent in January 2008.

Among the displaced, men and women (49 percent) were equally likely to have found
a new job at the time of the survey in January 2010. The reemployment rates for
both men and women declined from the prior survey. Displaced men were somewhat
more likely than displaced women to be unemployed at the time of the survey--39
versus 31 percent. The share of displaced women who had left the labor force, at
20 percent, was greater than that for men--12 percent.

In January 2010, the reemployment rates for long-tenured displaced whites (50
percent), Hispanics (49 percent), blacks (43 percent), and Asians (38 percent)
declined from the rates recorded in the January 2008 survey.

Reason for Job Loss and Receipt of Advance Notice

Of the 6.9 million long-tenured workers displaced during the January 2007 through
December 2009 period, 43 percent cited insufficient work, 31 percent lost or left
their jobs due to plant or company closings or moves, and 27 percent reported that
their position or shift was abolished as the reason for being displaced. The pro-
portion of displaced workers citing plant closings or moves or an abolished shift
or position decreased from the prior survey, while the share reporting insuffi-
cient work increased. In prior displaced worker survey periods, plant or company
closings or moves had been the most frequently stated reason for displacement.
(See table 2.)

Thirty-seven percent of long-tenured displaced workers in the January 2010 survey
received written advance notice that their jobs would be terminated, down from 43
percent in the prior survey. Workers who lost jobs due to plant or company closings
or moves were most likely to receive written advance notice. Of this group, 55 per-
cent received such notice. In contrast, 37 percent of workers who were displaced
because their position or shift was abolished and 24 percent of those who lost jobs
due to insufficient work were notified in advance. For each of these groups, how-
ever, receipt of written advance notice had little impact on the likelihood of being
reemployed at the time of the survey in January 2010. (See table 3.)

Industry and Occupation

As was the case in prior surveys, manufacturing accounted for the largest number of
displaced workers. During the 2007-09 period 1.6 million factory workers were dis-
placed from their jobs--23 percent of all long-tenured displaced workers. Manufac-
turing displacements were again concentrated within the durable goods component (1.1
million), particularly in transportation equipment and in computers and electronic
products. Workers in wholesale and retail trade accounted for 14 percent, and con-
struction made up 13 percent of all long-tenured displaced. (See table 4.)

The reemployment rates for workers displaced from construction (49 percent) and
wholesale and retail trade (49 percent) were the same as the overall reemployment
rate for displaced workers. (Workers were not necessarily reemployed in the same
industries from which they were displaced.) By comparison, reemployment rates for
workers displaced from jobs in financial activities (58 percent), education and
health services (57 percent), and government (55 percent) were above the overall
reemployment rate. Displaced manufacturing workers (39 percent) were the least
likely to be reemployed at the time of the survey.

Compared with the prior survey, the number of displaced workers was higher for all
occupation groups in January 2010. Reemployment rates differed by occupation, but
were highest for those employed in professional and related occupations (60 percent)
and lowest for those in production occupations (37 percent). (See table 5.)

Geographic Divisions

Compared to the prior survey period, the number of long-tenured workers displaced
during 2007-09 was higher in every geographic division of the United States. In
January 2010, those residing in the West North Central division had the highest
reemployment rates; about 60 percent of the displaced in this region were reem-
ployed at the time of the survey. About one-quarter of displaced manufacturing
workers lived in the East North Central division. (See table 6.)

Earnings

Of the 2.9 million displaced workers who lost full-time wage and salary jobs
during the 2007-09 period and were reemployed in January 2010, 2.2 million had
found full-time wage and salary jobs. Of these reemployed full-time workers who
reported earnings on their lost job, 45 percent were earning as much or more than
they did prior to displacement; the proportion was 55 percent in the January 2008
survey. In the most recent survey, 36 percent reported earnings losses of 20 per-
cent or more. (See table 7.)

Total Displaced Workers (With No Tenure Restriction)

The total number of workers displaced between January 2007 and December 2009 (re-
gardless of how long they had held their jobs) was 15.4 million, up by 7.2 million
from the previous survey period. Of the total number of workers who lost jobs over
the 2007-09 period, 49 percent were reemployed and 36 percent were unemployed in
January 2010. In the January 2008 survey, 67 percent of the total displaced were
reemployed and 19 percent were unemployed. (See table 8.)



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Last Modified Date: October 31, 2020