These are the 6 industries that showed the most job growth during the pandemic

Despite massive hits to tourism and the hospitality industry, this past May was the best month for job growth ever recorded in The Bureau of Labor Statistics’ eighty-year history. 

Total separations decreased by 5.8 million to 4.1 million, which is itself the single largest decrease since the series began back in 1932. 

“These improvements in the labor market reflected a limited resumption of economic activity that had been curtailed in March and April due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and efforts to contain it,” The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports.  “This release includes estimates of the number and rate of job openings, hires, and separations for the total nonfarm sector, by industry, and by four geographic regions.”

The organization recently reported that unemployment has dropped to 13.3%, and employers added 2.4 million new jobs to a record high of 6.5 million.

As more counties in the US commit to lockdown easing, some regions are adapting to restricted service better than others. 

Dense cities like New York City and Los Angeles rely on volume to turn a profit. It’s unclear how bars and restaurants in these areas will compensate for capacity guidelines authorized by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:

  • Lowest Risk: Food service limited to drive-through, delivery, take-out, and curb-side pick up.
  • More Risk: Drive-through, delivery, take-out, and curb-side pick up emphasized. On-site dining limited to outdoor seating. Seating capacity reduced to allow tables to be spaced at least 6 feet apart.
  • Even More Risk: On-site dining with both indoor and outdoor seating. Seating capacity reduced to allow tables to be spaced at least 6 feet apart.
  • Highest Risk: On-site dining with both indoor and outdoor seating. Seating capacity not reduced and tables not spaced at least 6 feet apart.

New York seems to be adhering to these considerations, which allows more locations to resume operations. 

Still, telework, contract work, under the table compensation, sick leave, and mass layoffs obscure national statistics. 

According to The Labor Department, millions of employees were erroneously listed  as “employed but not at work,” when they should have been classified  as “unemployed on temporary layoff.” 

When assessed correctly, the unemployment rate in the U.S  was actually around 19.2% in April and 16.1% in May (excluding seasonal adjustments). 

Below are the six industries experiencing the most growth during the pandemic, according to The Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Restaurant and bartenders 

Added 1.4 million jobs in May  

Construction workers

Added 464,000 in May

Retail workers

Added  367,800 jobs in May  

Factory workers

Added 225,000 jobs in May 

Delivery and laundry workers

Added 182,300 jobs in May 

Janitors 

added 68,400 jobs in June

“Large numbers of hires and separations occur every month throughout the business cycle. Net employment change results from the relationship between hires and separations. When the number of hires exceeds the number of separations, employment rises, even if the hires level is steady or declining.  Conversely, when the number of hires is less than the number of separations, employment declines, even if the hires level is steady or rising,” the authors conclude. 

Until a vaccine passes clinical rials, a new report published by Goldman Sachs contends that a national mask sanction could reduce US GDP losses by 5%.