Displaced Workers Summary

For release 10:00 a.m. (EDT) Thursday, August 25, 2016                       USDL-16-1731

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


                                WORKER DISPLACEMENT: 2013-15


From January 2013 through December 2015, there were 3.2 million workers displaced from
jobs they had held for at least 3 years, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported
today. This was down from 4.3 million workers for the prior survey period covering
January 2011 to December 2013. In January 2016, 66 percent of workers displaced from
2013 to 2015 were reemployed, up from 61 percent for the prior survey in January 2014.

Since 1984, 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 every
other January as supplements to the Current Population Survey (CPS), a monthly survey of
households 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 insufficient work for
them to do, or their position or shift was abolished. The period covered in this study
was 2013-15, the 3 calendar years prior to the January 2016 survey date. This period
was characterized by employment growth and declining unemployment. The following
analysis focuses primarily on the 3.2 million persons who had worked for their employer
for 3 or more years at the time of displacement (referred to as long-tenured workers).
An additional 4.2 million persons were displaced from jobs they had held for less than
3 years (referred to as short-tenured workers). Combining the short- and long-tenured
groups, the number of displaced workers totaled 7.4 million from 2013 to 2015. In the
2011-13 survey period, this group numbered 9.5 million.

Highlights from the January 2016 survey include:

   --In January 2016, 66 percent of the 3.2 million long-tenured displaced workers
     were reemployed, up from 61 percent in January 2014 and 56 percent in January
     2012. (See table 1.)

   --Thirty-seven percent of long-tenured displaced workers from the 2013-15 period
     cited that they lost their job because their plant or company closed down or
     moved; an additional 37 percent said that their position or shift was abolished
     and 26 percent cited insufficient work. (See table 2.)

   --Seventeen percent of long-tenured displaced workers lost a job in manufacturing.
     (See table 4.)

   --Among long-tenured workers who were displaced from full-time wage and salary
     jobs and were reemployed in such jobs in January 2016, 53 percent had earnings
     that were as much or greater than those of their lost job, similar to the prior
     survey. (See table 7.)

Characteristics of the Displaced

Sixty-six percent of the 3.2 million long-tenured displaced workers were reemployed at
the time of the survey in January 2016, up from 61 percent for the January 2014 survey,
and 56 percent for the January 2012 survey. The proportion unemployed at the time of the
most recent survey was 16 percent, down from 21 percent in the January 2014 survey and
from 27 percent in the January 2012 survey. Nineteen percent of long-tenured displaced
workers were not in the labor force in January 2016, about unchanged from the previous
survey. (See table 1.)

In January 2016, the reemployment rate was 73 percent for workers ages 25 to 54, up from
68 percent for the prior survey. Reemployment rates were lower for older workers. In
January 2016, the rates for those ages 55 to 64 and 65 years and over were 60 percent
and 27 percent, respectively. Among those age 65 and over, 63 percent were no longer in
the labor force when surveyed, little different from the prior survey.

Among long-tenured displaced workers, men and women had similar reemployment rates in
January 2016 (67 percent and 64 percent, respectively). The reemployment rate for women
increased by 6 percentage points from the prior survey, while the rate for men changed
little. Long-tenured displaced men and women were equally likely to be unemployed at the
time of the survey at 16 percent. The share of male displaced workers who had left the
labor force increased by 4 percentage points to 18 percent, while the share of women was
little changed at 20 percent.

In January 2016, the reemployment rate for long-tenured displaced White workers rose
by 4 percentage points to 67 percent. The rates for Hispanics (69 percent), Blacks
(62 percent), and Asians (55 percent), changed little from the prior survey.

Reason for Job Loss and Receipt of Advance Notice

Of the 3.2 million long-tenured workers displaced during the January 2013 through
December 2015 period, 37 percent lost or left their jobs due to plant or company
closings or moves. The proportion of displaced workers citing that their position or
shift was abolished was 37 percent and the proportion citing insufficient work was
26 percent. (See table 2.)

Forty-five percent of long-tenured displaced workers in the January 2016 survey received
written advance notice that their jobs would be terminated, up from 40 percent for the 
January 2014 survey. Workers who lost jobs during the 2013-15 period due to plant or
company closings or moves continued to be most likely to receive written advance notice.
Of this group, 60 percent received such notice. In contrast, 41 percent of workers who
were displaced because their position or shift was abolished and 28 percent of those who
lost jobs due to insufficient work were notified in advance. For each of these groups,
reemployment rates were not statistically different for those who received written
advanced notice and those who did not. (See table 3.)

Industry and Occupation

During the 2013-15 period, 553,000 long-tenured manufacturing workers were displaced
from their jobs--17 percent of all long-tenured displaced workers. Manufacturing
displacements occurred mostly in the durable goods component (332,000). Workers in
wholesale and retail trade accounted for 15 percent of all long-tenured displacements,
professional and business services accounted for 12 percent, and education and health
services also accounted for 12 percent of displacements. (See table 4.)

Among the major industry groups in January 2016, reemployment rates were not
statistically different for most industries. Workers displaced from mining, however,
were the least likely to be reemployed (41 percent). The rate for workers displaced
from education and health services increased to 70 percent and the reemployment rate
for those displaced from professional and business services rose to 69 percent. The 
reemployment rates for workers displaced from other major industry groups changed little
from the prior survey. (Workers were not necessarily reemployed in the same industries
from which they were displaced.)

Reemployment rates were not statistically different by major occupation group in January
2016. The rate for those displaced from production, transportation, and material moving
occupations increased to 65 percent and the reemployment rate for those displaced from
sales and office occupations rose to 63 percent. The rates for those displaced from
management, professional, and related occupations (69 percent); service occupations (63
percent); and natural resources, construction, and maintenance occupations (62 percent)
changed little from the prior survey. (See table 5.)

Geographic Divisions

The number of long-tenured workers displaced during the 2013-15 period declined from the
2011-13 period in most of the geographic divisions of the United States. In January 2016,
reemployment rates ranged from 75 percent for the Mountain division to 53 percent for the
East South Central division. (See table 6.) 

Earnings

Of the 1.8 million long-tenured displaced workers who lost full-time wage and salary jobs
during the 2013-15 period and were reemployed, 1.5 million had full-time wage and salary
jobs in January 2016. Of these reemployed full-time workers who reported earnings on
their lost job, the proportion that were earning as much or more than they did at their
lost job was 53 percent in January 2016, little different from the January 2014 survey.
(See table 7.)

Total Displaced Workers (With No Tenure Restriction)

The total number of workers displaced between January 2013 and December 2015 (regardless
of how long they had held their jobs) was 7.4 million, down by 2.1 million from the
2011-13 survey period. Of the total number of workers who lost jobs over the 2013-15
period, 67 percent were reemployed, up from 61 percent in the prior survey. The
proportion unemployed fell by 7 percentage points to 17 percent in January 2016. (See
table 8.)



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Last Modified Date: August 25, 2016