While 96,000 jobs were added in August, according to today’s Employment Situation report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the steady loss of public-sector jobs continues to hold back the recovery. In today’s Jobs Picture, EPI economist Heidi Shierholz explains that though the private sector has been adding jobs, the public sector has been losing them over the last four years. In August, the public sector lost 7,000 jobs, and since the peak of public-sector employment four years ago in August 2008, the public sector has shed 680,000 jobs. Through ripple effects, the loss of public-sector jobs also causes job loss in the private sector, amplifying the drain on the recovery.
For a comprehensive examination of not just jobs, unemployment, and wages, but also income, wealth, poverty, and economic mobility, see the forthcoming State of Working America, 12th Edition, which will be released on Tuesday, Sept. 11.