September 2004, Vol. 127, No. 9
Employment in the information sector in March 2004
Regional Economist, Philadelphia Regional Office, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
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Employment in the information sector stood at 3,158,000 in the United States in March 2004, 1.7 percent less than the year before.1 Nationwide, 56,000 jobs were lost over this 12-month period, continuing a trend of over-the-year declines that began in September 2001. (See chart 1.) Since the start of the most recent recession in March 2001, this industry sector has lost 555,000 jobs or approximately 1 out of every 7 positions. Nearly three-fourths of the monthly over-the-year losses in information since March 2001 occurred in the telecommunications (–276,300) and publishing (–127,300) industries. (Use of not seasonally adjusted data does not allow for over-the-month comparisons; accordingly, monthly analysis was based on the over-the-year change.)
1 The nonfarm payroll series for States and metropolitan areas produced from the Current Employment Statistics (CES) program are based on the 2002 North American Industry Classification System (NAICS). NAICS is the product of a cooperative effort on the part of the statistical agencies of the United States, Canada, and Mexico. NAICS uses a production-oriented approach to categorize economic units. Units with similar production processes are classified in the same industry. See http://www.bls.gov/sae/saewhatis.htm for an overview of NAICS classification. All State nonfarm payroll employment estimates have a NAICS-based history extending back to January 1990, except for total nonfarm employment estimates which have retained their beginning date.
This report contains data for the Information sector (NAICS sector code 51), which includes software publishing, and both traditional publishing and publishing exclusively on the Internet; the motion picture and sound recording industries; the broadcasting industries, including traditional broadcasting and those broadcasting exclusively over the Internet; the telecommunications industries; and the industries known as Internet service providers and Web search portals, data processing industries, and the information services industries. These nonfarm payroll data series reflect March 2003 benchmark levels, the completion of the conversion of the CES survey sample from a quota-based basis to a probability-based basis, and a modification of the seasonal adjustment process.
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