February comes up short
While NFP numbers exceeded expectations this month, LinkUp data for February finds the pandemic recovery unfolding at a much slower pace than previous months. This sluggishness is expected to continue, with large companies increasingly feeling the pandemic’s impact. and sectors like service, entertainment and hospitality still falling below their pre-COVID levels. Experts in NYC believe local job growth will remain slow, “as many of the jobs that were easiest to add back have already been restored.” Perhaps a nod to what we’re seeing nationwide.
Overall, February was a month of losses. Though seven of the last twelve months actually saw increases, February was one of the five that showed a decline. Drilling down to the state level, 61% of states experienced a downturn.
59% of occupations saw decline as well. Job listings for Food Preparation and Serving occupations declined the most in February, down 7.61% overall. Many large companies in the industry made substantial cuts to their listings, fueling this downward trend. Cracker Barrel cut their job listings in half, McDonald’s listings were down 17%, and Checkers Drive-In was down 20% as well.
Major declines were also observed in Healthcare Support, as well as Healthcare Practitioners and Technical Occupations. This downward trend in healthcare jobs may signal a natural leveling off, after demand for these occupations remained consistently heavy since May.
The month was not without growth though, with Computer and Mathematical occupations up 7.3%, approaching pre-pandemic levels. Business and Financial Operations and Legal occupations are nearing pre-COVID levels as well. Job listings in Arts, Entertainment, and Recreation; Community and Social Service; Farming, Fishing, and Forestry; Life, Physical, and Social Sciences; and Transportation are all also strong.