Despite 'He-Covery', It's Still A 'Mancession'

By Dr. Mark. J. Perry

Diane Sawyer at ABC reports, “There’s a new chapter in this very serious battle of the sexes. In this fragile recovery the race is on for jobs and it’s all heating up, and one gender is not just winning, it’s overwhelming.” The report then goes on to highlight the “he-covery” of men getting all of the new jobs being created during the recovery.

From January 2010 to February 2011, it’s true men have gained jobs and female employment has remained flat (see chart below). During that period, about 90% of the new 1.2 million payroll jobs have gone to men. But that’s only part of the “jobs by gender” story.
Here’s the part of the “battle of the sexes” that got left out of the story: If you go all the way back to when employment levels peaked at about 138 million payroll jobs in January 2008, here’s the gender breakdown:

1. Male employment is down by 4,932,000 jobs since the January 2008 peak, compared to female employment being 2.549 million jobs below the peak. Therefore, we can say that for every 100 jobs lost by women since the start of the recession, men have lost 193.5 jobs.

2. On a percentage basis, men have suffered about 66% of the recession-related job losses, and women only 34%.

Bottom Line: Despite the fact that the jobs gained in 2010 did favour men during what is being called the “he-covery/mancovery,” it’s still very much of a “mancession” once we account for all of the jobs gained and lost since the start of the recession.

Related Reading – U.S. Economy: 12 Years to Fill the 12.4 Million Job Gap?

About The AuthorDr. Mark J. Perry is a professor of economics and finance in the School of Management at the Flint campus of the University of Michigan, and he blogs at Carpe Diem.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the author’s own, and do not necessarily reflect those of EconMatters.

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