The man-cession

Date posted: May 12, 2011

‘Man-cession’ is a play on the words man and recession, because this recession has apparently hurt men much more than women. N.C. State University economist Mike Walden gives some statistics and then the reasons why.

“The most telling statistic is the percentage of men and women in the labor force, which means you either have work or you’re looking for work. And for men, this has fallen dramatically from 70 percent of men in the labor force pre-recession down to 65 percent today. So, we drop 5 percentage points. But women hardly budged. It’s gone down, but only from 57 percent to 55 percent. So that’s very telling.

“Now the drop in labor force participation among men has also been bigger for African-American men than for white men.

“And I think a big reason for this change and the so called man-cession is the fact that very hard hit during this recession has been to industries that are predominately male-dominated, manufacturing and construction.

“Now the big concern here of course is that the longer that a male — or anyone, for that matter — is out of work, their skills deteriorate and it’s more difficult for them to get back in the labor force. So this is something we’re going to have to watch very very closely.”

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