Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Jobs in Mid-Wage Industries Trail in Recovery

Between the first quarter of 2007 and the third quarter of 2009, about 94,000 jobs in mid-wage industries disappeared.  In comparison, about 61,000 jobs were lost in higher-wage industries, while roughly 48,000 jobs were lost in lower-wage industries.

As broad economic recovery continues, which industries are gaining back the most jobs?  As it turns out, although 46 percent of jobs lost during the recession were from mid-wage industries, only 24 percent of jobs gained back have been in mid-wage industries.  In fact, mid-wage industries have gained back only 37 percent of jobs lost in the recession, lagging behind both higher-wage (89%) and lower-wage industries (113%).

A few of the biggest examples we refer to in the mid-range are ambulatory health care services, wood product manufacturing, and merchant wholesalers.  Higher-wage industries include hospitals, computer and electronic manufacturing, and professional, scientific, and technical services.  A few lower-wage industries are gas stations and apparel manufacturing. The entire list used in this analysis includes 84 industries.

While mid-wage industries trail in job growth, the recovery is broader than it was in the early stages. Initially, lower-wage industries added back more jobs than mid and higher-wage industries.  Now, mid-wage and higher-wage industries are adding back jobs, and Oregon's average real wage has increased.  

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