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Economic News Release
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Business Employment Dynamics Summary

For release 10:00 a.m. (ET), Wednesday, July 29, 2020                                   	USDL-20-1463

Technical Information:	(202) 691-6553  *  BDMInfo@bls.gov  *  www.bls.gov/bdm
Media Contact:	        (202) 691-5902  *  PressOffice@bls.gov

BUSINESS EMPLOYMENT DYNAMICS  FOURTH QUARTER 2019

From September 2019 to December 2019, gross job gains from opening and expanding private-sector
establishments were 7.8 million, an increase of 490,000 jobs from the previous quarter, the U.S. Bureau
of Labor Statistics reported today. Over this period, gross job losses from closing and contracting
private-sector establishments were 7.0 million, a decrease of 291,000 jobs from the previous quarter.
The difference between the number of gross job gains and the number of gross job losses yielded a net
employment gain of 792,000 jobs in the private sector during the fourth quarter of 2019. (See tables A
and 1.)

The change in the number of jobs over time is the net result of increases and decreases in employment
that occur at all private businesses in the economy. Business Employment Dynamics (BED) statistics track
these changes in employment at private-sector establishments from the third month of one quarter to the
third month of the next. The difference between the number of gross job gains and the number of gross
job losses is the net change in employment. (See Technical Note.) The BED data series include gross job
gains and gross job losses by industry subsector, for the 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico,
and the Virgin Islands, as well as gross job gains and gross job losses at the firm level by employer size
class.

Gross Job Gains

In the fourth quarter of 2019, gross job gains represented 6.2 percent of private-sector employment. Gross
job gains are the sum of increases in employment due to expansions at existing establishments and the
addition of new jobs at opening establishments. Gross job gains at expanding establishments totaled 6.3
million in the fourth quarter of 2019, an increase of 369,000 jobs compared to the previous quarter.
Opening establishments accounted for 1.5 million of the jobs gained in the fourth quarter of 2019, an
increase of 121,000 jobs from the previous quarter. (See tables A, 1, 2, and 3.)

Gross Job Losses

In the fourth quarter of 2019, gross job losses represented 5.6 percent of private-sector employment.
Gross job losses are the result of contractions in employment at existing establishments and the loss of
jobs at closing establishments. Contracting establishments lost 5.7 million jobs in the fourth quarter of
2019, a decrease of 348,000 jobs from the prior quarter. In the fourth quarter of 2019, closing
establishments lost 1.3 million jobs, an increase of 57,000 jobs from the previous quarter. (See tables A,
1, 2, and 3.)

Establishment Births and Deaths

In the fourth quarter of 2019, the number of establishment births (a subset of the openings data)
increased by 16,000, to a total of 266,000 establishments. These new establishments accounted for
897,000 jobs, an increase of 55,000 jobs from the previous quarter. Data for establishment deaths (a
subset of the closings data) are available through the first quarter of 2019, when 698,000 jobs were
lost at 222,000 establishments, a decrease of 64,000 jobs from the fourth quarter of 2018. (See Technical
Note and table 8.)

Industries

Gross job gains exceeded gross job losses in 11 of 13 industries in the fourth quarter of 2019. The service-
providing industries experienced a net job increase of 809,000 jobs in the fourth quarter of 2019. Within
the service-providing industries, transportation and warehousing had the largest over-the-quarter net job
increase, with a gain of 256,000 jobs. This was the result of 509,000 gross job gains and 253,000 gross
job losses. The leisure and hospitality and retail trade sectors also showed increases in the fourth
quarter of 2019, with 182,000 and 3,000 net jobs gained respectively. The goods-producing industries
experienced a net job decrease of 17,000 jobs in the fourth quarter of 2019. Of the goods-producing
industries, the natural resources and mining sector experienced a net decrease of 42,000 jobs.  However,
the construction sector had a net gain of 19,000 jobs and the manufacturing sector showed a net increase
of 6,000 jobs. (See table 3.)


 Table A. Three-month private sector gross job gains and losses, seasonally adjusted

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                          |                  3 months ended                 
                 Category                 |    Dec. |    Mar. |    June |   Sept. |    Dec.
                                          |    2018 |    2019 |    2019 |    2019 |    2019
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                          |              Levels (in thousands)              
                                          |--------------------------------------------------
 Gross job gains......................... |   7,768 |   7,375 |   7,605 |   7,341 |   7,831
        At expanding establishments...... |   6,318 |   6,038 |   6,229 |   5,979 |   6,348
        At opening establishments........ |   1,450 |   1,337 |   1,376 |   1,362 |   1,483
                                          |         |         |         |         |        
 Gross job losses........................ |   6,957 |   6,850 |   7,423 |   7,330 |   7,039
        At contracting establishments.... |   5,626 |   5,649 |   6,078 |   6,050 |   5,702
        At closing establishments........ |   1,331 |   1,201 |   1,345 |   1,280 |   1,337
                                          |         |         |         |         |        
 Net employment change (1)............... |     811 |     525 |     182 |      11 |     792
                                          |         |         |         |         |        
                                          |--------------------------------------------------
                                          |                 Rates (percent)                 
                                          |--------------------------------------------------
 Gross job gains......................... |     6.3 |     5.9 |     6.0 |     5.8 |     6.2
        At expanding establishments...... |     5.1 |     4.8 |     4.9 |     4.7 |     5.0
        At opening establishments........ |     1.2 |     1.1 |     1.1 |     1.1 |     1.2
                                          |         |         |         |         |        
 Gross job losses........................ |     5.6 |     5.5 |     5.9 |     5.8 |     5.6
        At contracting establishments.... |     4.5 |     4.5 |     4.8 |     4.8 |     4.5
        At closing establishments........ |     1.1 |     1.0 |     1.1 |     1.0 |     1.1
                                          |         |         |         |         |        
 Net employment change (1)............... |     0.7 |     0.4 |     0.1 |     0.0 |     0.6
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
(1) The net employment change is the difference between total gross job gains and total gross 
    job losses. See the Technical Note for further information.

Firm Size

In the fourth quarter of 2019, firms with 1-49 employees had a net employment gain of 192,000. Firms 
with 50-249 employees had a net employment gain of 107,000. Firms with 250 or more employees had a 
net employment gain of 395,000. (See tables 4 and 5.)

States

Gross job gains exceeded gross job losses in 48 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and
the Virgin Islands in the fourth quarter of 2019. (See tables 6 and 7.)

For More Information

Additional information on gross job gains and gross job losses is available online at www.bls.gov/bdm. 
This information includes data on the levels and rates of gross job gains and gross job losses by firm 
size, not seasonally adjusted data and other seasonally adjusted time series not presented in this release, 
charts of gross job gains and gross job losses by industry and firm size, and answers to frequently asked  
questions. Additional information about the Business Employment Dynamics data can be found 
in the Technical Note of this release or can be obtained by emailing BDMinfo@bls.gov.

_____________
The Business Employment Dynamics for First Quarter 2020 are scheduled to be released on 
Wednesday, October 28, 2020 at 10:00 a.m. (ET).

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Last Modified Date: July 29, 2020