US job growth is expected to be much slower in the next decade than it was after the 2008 crisis, Labor Dpartment says

  • US job growth is expected to be 0.4% annually, or an additional 6 million jobs, between 2019 and 2029, according to projections released Tuesday by the Labor Department.
  • That's slower growth than the 1.3% annual rate between 2009 and 2019, following the Great Recession. 
  • The projections do not account for the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. 
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US kob growth is expected to slow in the next decade as baby boomers age, according to new figures from the Labor Department.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that the US will add 6 million jobs between 2019 and 2029, a 0.4% annual rate of growth, according to a report released Tuesday. The rate is much slower than the 1.3% annual growth seen between 2009 and 2019, following the Great Recession. It was the longest expansion on record.  

The figures do not include the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the report. Instead, the forecast is a long-term projection "intended to capture structural change in the economy, not cyclical fluctuations," according to the BLS. 

"However, besides the immediate recessionary impacts, the pandemic may cause new structural changes to the economy," the Labor Department wrote in the report. "BLS releases new employment projections annually, and subsequent projections will incorporate new information on economic structural changes as it becomes available."

For the 2020 to 2030 report, the BLS will include possible pandemic scenarios in its forecasts, it said. 

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In addition, growth in gross domestic product is expected to be 1.8% annually from 2019 to 2029, slower than the 2.3% seen in the previous decade. Still, labor productivity is expected to increase to 1.8% annually in the upcoming period from 1.1%. 

The slowed growth will mostly be due to demographic changes in the workforce, according to the BLS. By 2029, all baby boomers will be 65 years old or more, a group that "contributes to slower projected growth in the labor force, as well as a continued decline in the labor force participation rate," as older people are less likely to work. 

Still, most occupations are expected to see growth over the next decade, according to the report. Of the top 20 fastest growing industries for the next decade, five are in the healthcare and social assistance sector. The biggest change in employment over the next decade is slated to be in home health and personal care aides, which pay a median salary of $25,280.

This is due to "increased demand to care for the aging baby-boom population, longer life expectancies, and continued growth in the number of patients with chronic conditions," said the BLS.

Jobs in professional, business, and services sectors are also expected to grow with technological advances — the biggest percentage gain in employment over the next decade will be for wind turbine service technicians, with a median salary of $52,910, according to the report. 

The manufacturing sector is expected to lose 444,820 jobs in the next decade, the most of any sector, due to "adoption of new productivity-enhancing technologies, such as robotics and international competition." 

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