2001 May

jgo Resume Reading Room
jgo Econ Data & Graphs jgo Econ News Bits
Economic News Analysis Summary
Kermit's home page jgo Links
jgo's Work in Progress
Page Bottom

updated: 2017-03-19
2001 May
    1 2 3 4 5
6 7 8 9 10 11 12
13 14 15 16 17 18 19
20 21 22 23 24 25 26
27 28 29 30 31    


  "Feeling proud of what you do & who you do it with makes people at good work-places say that they have 'more than a job'." --- Robert Levering 1988 _A Great Place to Work_ pg 15  


James Heintz _PERI_/_Ultimate Field Guide to the US Economy_
New Economy, Same Old Lay-Offs
"Lay-offs over the past several months have risen to levels last seen during the down-sizing binge of the 1980s.   Statistics from lay-offs involving 50 or more workers show that the number of people filling out the initial paper-work for unemployment benefits totaled over half a million in both the last quarter of 2000 and the first quarter of 2001...   Manufacturing and business services account for the largest share of recent lay-offs -- comprising 46% and 23% of all new unemployment claims, respectively.   Over the past few months, the West Coast and the Midwest have experienced the most lay-offs, although the number of lay-offs is on the rise almost everywhere.   Technology firms haven’t avoided this wave of down-sizing...   many dot-com companies have slashed their workforce to send signals to investors that they mean business.   However, there's no guarantee that such tactics will turn things around.   In the meantime, most of the costs of adjustment are borne by the workers.   In this latest round of lay-offs, new entrants to the labor market aren’t the only ones losing their jobs.   Older employees with many years of experience have suddenly found themselves without work."


Jan Norman, Elizabeth Aguilera, Susan Funk & Ygnacio Nanetti _Orange County Register_
Small firms' big growth: Only the Phoenix area has been exceeding O.C. in creation of jobs.
"In 1999 March... Orange County was creating more new jobs than virtually every other county in the United States...   the growth at smaller businesses more than off-set cut-backs at some larger companies...   Orange County's non-government job growth of 4.5% was almost double the national growth between 1998 and 1999.   Local job growth peaked in that period, although it has remained strong, said Ann Marshall, labor market analyst for the state Employment Development Department...   The professional and technology services sector added 4,500 new jobs, and finance and insurance services added 12K in 1998-99, the Census Bureau reported...   Outlook still good despite 1st-quarter dip..."


_USA Today_/_Reuters_
Announced Job Cuts Hit Record High in April


Jeffrey B. Wenger DRAFT
State trends in unemployment insurance eligibility, benefits, and take-up, 1990-2000
"From 1990-2000 we analyze changes in (1) eligibility requirements, (2) benefit amounts, and (3) the percentage of unemployed workers applying for benefits, referred to as insured unemployment...   In 1980 insured unemployment was 50%; by the end of the 1980s insured unemployment had fallen to 33%.   Research by Burtless and Saks (1984), Vroman (1991), and Baldwin and McHugh (1992) suggests that a substantial portion of the decline was driven by policy changes.   In particular, Baldwin and McHugh find that policy changes account for 55% of the decline in UI recipiency.   By contrast, Blank and Card (1991) find that UI policy changes had little effect on UI recipiency.   Rather, they find that population shifts from historically generous states to less generous states had driven the national decline.   By 1992, insured unemployment had increased and its level had surpassed the 1980 level, but by 1995 the national rate for insured unemployment had dropped 16%.   This raises an important question about the cyclicality of the unemployment insurance system."




Lee Copeland _Computer World_
Dot-Com Bust a Mixed Bag for IT Staffing
"'We figured people coming from dot-coms would be top-end and that we'd be working with the latest and greatest.', said Bryant Fong, MIS manager at Advanced Research Laboratories, a shampoo and personal care products manufacturer in Costa Mesa, CA.   'When we interview them, their mentality is, '''I can learn as I go.'''.   But we have rules and procedures that we have to follow.'   Others also cite the free-wheeling nature of young technology workers who got their start in Internet companies, many of which were known for non-traditional office environments and work habits.   Though willing to go the extra mile, these developers aren't accustomed to following structured methods for software development...   Internet-related job cuts in April totaled 17,500 - an increase of more than 80% from March, according to a study released last month by Chicago-based out-placement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas Inc."






Shelley Emling _Atlanta Journal-Constitution_
Despite lay-offs, tech job picture not so gloomy after all
"Just this week, the number of job cuts at Internet-related firms hit a dreary mile-stone of 100K employees since 1999 December, according to The Standard.com's Lay-off Tracker.   The Chicago-based out-placement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas paints an even more dismal picture, reporting that announced lay-offs by all U.S. companies reached an 8-year high of 165K in April, led by cuts in the technology and telecommunications sectors.   Many of the newly unemployed have been hit hard by their misfortunes.   Personal bankruptcies have reached a 2-year high in Northern California, and the business of repossessing luxury cars is booming in Silicon Valley..."



Julekha Dash _IT World_/_ComputerWorld_
Class of 2001 fases shaky job market




_abc News_
Consumer Sentiment Steady


_Monthly Labor Review_
Extended mass lay-offs climbed in first quarter
"In the first quarter of 2001, there were 1,664 mass layoff actions by employers that resulted in the separation of 305,227 workers from their jobs for more than 30 days.   Both the total number of layoff events and the number of separations were the highest for any first quarter since the BLS program that tabulates mass lay-offs began in the second quarter of 1995."

Heather Pringle _Free Republic_
the curse of the red-headed mummy in the Tarim basin/Taklamakhan desert/south Gobi desert




_Business Software Association_
Software Piracy (pdf)
"the world piracy rate in 2000 did not decline, but instead showed a slight increase to 37%.   The dollar losses due to piracy declined 3.5% from 1999 to $11.75G.   This decline in dollar terms is not an indication of a decrease in piracy.   It is, in fact, the result of several other factors.   The U.S. dollar was strong in 2000.   Software prices continued to fall, advancing a trend of declining prices that has evolved over the last decade.   In addition, the overall market for software grew at the slowest rate since the study started in 1994...   Both the United States & Canada experienced declines in the piracy rate in 2000, with the U.S. at 24%, the lowest in the world, & Canada at 38%."

Top 25 Countries by Piracy Rate
Red China91%94%
Ukraine/Other CIS90%89%
El Salvador83%79%
Costa Rica71%68%
Dominican Republic72%68%




press release: Contingent and Alternative Employment Arrangements
"From 1999 February to 2001 February, the proportion of U.S. workers holding contingent jobs edged down, the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the U.S. Department of Labor reported today.   Contingent workers are persons who do not expect their jobs to last or who report that their jobs are temporary.   Using 3 alternative measures, contingent workers accounted for 1.7% to 4.0% of total employment in 2001 February, compared with 1.9% to 4.3% in 1999 February.   The broadest measure of contingency is well below that recorded in 1995 February (4.9%), when the survey was first conducted.   The drop in the contingency rate over the period coincided with declining unemployment and increasing employment.   The analysis in this release focuses on the broadest measure of contingency, which includes 5.4M workers who do not expect their current job to last.   In addition to contingent workers, the February 2001 survey also identified persons in alternative work arrangements.   The survey found 8.6M independent contractors (6.4% of total employment), 2.1M on-call workers (1.6% of total employment), 1.2M temporary help agency workers (0.9% of the employed), and 633K contract company workers (0.5% of total employment).   The proportions of workers employed in all 4 alternative arrangements were about unchanged since 1999 February.   With the exception of independent contractors, for whom there was a slight decline, these rates were little changed from those of the first survey in 1995 February."




Thomas Kupper and Maureen Magee _San Diego Union-Tribune_
Knowledge in demand
"Every day in the human resources department at Qualcomm, a thousand or more resumes arrive from people who hope to land high-paying jobs with San Diego's best-known technology company.   But hundreds of candidates are rejected for a more fundamental reason: They don't have the strong educational background [i.e. hyper-credentialism] that Qualcomm and other technology companies want...   Companies are hiring thousands of workers, but many of the jobs require technical expertise or at least a 4-year degree from a good college.   Workers who lack those credentials risk getting left behind...   At Qualcomm roughly 70 new hires join the company a month, and many of them are engineers with graduate degrees."


Lisa B. Song _San Diego Union-Tribune_ pg B1
The Dynamics of Age
"With over 10 years of computer programming experience under his belt & hundreds of thousands of IT positions unfilled yearly, he [48 year old Alan Ezer] couldn't find a job to save his life...   [His] extensive background should logically have been his trump card in a thirsty job market, his skill set an alphabet soup of languages dating back to the earlier COBOL, FORTRAN, C & SQL, along with the now in demand Java.   As it turns out, he says, his past knowledge was seen as unwanted baggage.   [He] explains, 'Where earlier knowledge would be revered in other fields, it is detested in the computer industry...'
The market has become more difficult for older workers since congress passed a bill in 1998 that doubled the number of foreign high-tech workers from 65K to 115K that could be brought into the country under H1-B work visas, [Norm Matloff, a professor of computer science at the University of Califorinia at Davis] says.   The cap has since been raised to 195K.   Companies would be 'forced' to dip into the large pool of older workers in the USA if they didn't have access to scores of low-priced foreign talent, he says.   According to the Information Technology Association of America, an industry-funded organization, 843K IT jobs went unfilled last year, with abotu 20% of them programming positions.
A survey last year by the Institute of Electrical & Electronics Engineers [IEEE] found that IT workers 45 years & older were rated as better problem-solvers, communicators & equivalent to younger workers on technical knowledge & team-work skills.   At the same time, the study found that older workers were viewed as weaker in adapting to new assignments & staying abreast of the latest tech developments."

Crayton Harrison _San Diego Union-Tribune_ pg B2
Slow-down? What slow-down?: Tech executives' lobbyists say students are finding plenty of job offers even in a slowing economy
"One recent study by the Information Technology Association of America says demand for information technology workers is down 44% this year [2001] from 2000...   Computer engineering graduates saw their starting salaries rise 14.3% to an average of $53,443.   Starting pay for electrical engineers gained 6.6% to an average of $50,850."



Lori Enos _CNN_/_CIO Today_/_NewsFactor_
Dot-Com Lay-Offs Slowing Down
Tech News World
eCommerce Times
"Although the number of dot-com job cuts was down in May compared to April, the number of dot-coms that closed their virtual doors grew from 13 companies in April to 29 in May...   After setting a record in April, the number of dot-com job cuts fell by 24% in May, according to a report released Tuesday by Chicago, Illinois-based outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas (CGC)...   In April, a record 17,554 employees got pink slips from their dot-com employers.   However, in May, that number dropped to 13,419.   Even so, over the past 5 months, 64,983 dot-com job cuts have been reported, which is 58% more than all of the dot-com lay-offs in 2000.
  Despite the drop from last month, May's job cuts were still more than five times as many as the 2,660 job cuts reported in the year-earlier month, near the start of the dot-com shake-out.   'It was 2000 May when we saw dot-com job cuts really begin to escalate.', Challenger said.   'Prior to that, cuts averaged a couple hundred a month.'...
  Said Challenger: 'Displaced tech workers in ultra-costly Silicon Valley cannot afford to wait around for the next technology surge, living unemployment check to unemployment check.'   The Information Technology Association of America reported in April that there are still about 425K unfilled information technology jobs in the USA...
  Although the number of dot-com job cuts was down in May, the number of dot-coms that shut down grew from 13 companies in April to 29 in May.   The number of dot-com closures in May was also only 2 fewer than the high of 31 closures in 2000 November."


Alan Fram _AP_/_South Coast Today_
Wealthy paid more tax, got richer
"The report by [CBO] said that from 1979 to 1997, the portion of all federal taxes that are paid by the best-off 1% of households has grown from 15.5% to 23%.   That means their share of total taxes grew by 48% over the period.   During the same time, the average after-tax income of that wealthiest 1% swelled from $263,700 to $677,900 -- a 157% increase that dwarfs the income growth of households making less money.   The lowest-earning one-fifth of Americans saw their average after-tax income drop from $10,900 to $10,800 during the period, the study showed.   And the middle one-fifth of Americans by income distribution went from a $33,800 average to $37,200 -- a 10% increase."

2001 May
_University of Tennessee Faculty Senate_
ad hoc Committee on Contingent Employment

2001 May
Nancy K. McGuire _Chemical Innovation_/_American Chemical Society_
Scientists as communicators

_BigCharts.com_ S&P Retail Index
Note the signs of weakness shown in the dip from 1998 July through November, relatively flat 1999, and the drop all through 2000.

AAA southern California fuel prices
AAA national fuel prices
AAA state by state

Batman Begins

External links may expire at any time.
Neither this page, nor the opinions expressed or implied in it are endorsed by Michael Badnarik, Ron Paul, Bob Barr, Wayne Allyn Root, Warner Brothers, Gary Johnson, president Donald Trump, nor by my hosts, Kermit and Rateliff.

jgo Resume Reading Room
jgo Econ Data & Graphs jgo Econ News Bits
Economic News Analysis Summary
Kermit's home page jgo Links
jgo's Work in Progress
Page Top