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Thursday, March 6, 2014

How Many Jobs Has Obama Created or Lost? (February 2014 update)

This report has been updated for March 2015 HERE:  How Many Jobs Have Been Created or Lost Under Obama?

How Many Jobs (Net) Created in 2014?

The numbers below are as of February 2014.  For current numbers, please click one of the above links.

How many NET jobs created or lost under Obama as of February 2014?  
How many private sector jobs have been lost or added during Obama's presidency?

How many new jobs in the last 5 years since Obama was inaugurated?  
How many Americans were working or employed when Obama took office... compared to now?

Numbers for February with latest revisions:

Since the "trough" of the recession in late 2009/early 2010 in seasonally adjusted numbers:
  • 8.0 million MORE jobs in total
  • 8.7 million MORE private sector jobs
  • 7.3 million MORE people working
How many workers were full-time or part-time at the "trough" of the recession in late 2009/early 2010 compared to now?

  • 7.3 million MORE people working full-time.
  • 149,000 FEWER people working part-time.  
  • (Yes, despite what you may have heard, from the depth of the recession until now, we have many more additional people working full-time vs. part-time jobs. When a recession hits, companies generally cut back on full-time workers first.  When companies start hiring again, the number of full-time workers increases.)

Since Bush left office & Obama took office (January 2009) in seasonally adjusted numbers:
  • 3.7 million MORE jobs in total
  • 4.5 million MORE private sector jobs
  • 3.1 million MORE people working

How many workers were full-time or part-time when Obama was inaugurated compared to now?

  • 2.0 million MORE people working full-time
  • 953,000 million MORE people working part-time  

Have any private jobs been lost (net) over the past 
48 months since February 2010?
  • 48 months of consecutive private-sector job growth.

Have any jobs been lost (net) over the past 41 months since September 2010?

  • 41 months of consecutive overall job growth.
Are more people unemployed now than when Obama took office in January 2009?  
  • Despite 1,514,000 MORE people in the labor force (either working or actively looking for work) now vs. January 2009, there are 1,599,000 FEWER people unemployed now than in January 2009. 

What's the difference between "net" and "gross" jobs gained and lost?

Let's get something straight:  Jobs are lost every week and every month. People are fired, people are laid off, businesses or locations are closed and everybody is let go. 

Also people quit every week.  You yourself, dear reader,  may have quit a job at some point in time. 

But people are also HIRED every week and every month.  New businesses open, businesses expand, businesses replace people who have left or been fired.  Every week.  You yourself, dear reader, may have been hired for a job at some point in time.This happens in good times and bad. 

Yes, even in bad times, people are getting hired.  Even in good times, people are let go.  

Now:  The monthly jobs reportupon which this article is based, presents estimates based on surveys as to how many jobs are gained or lost in a given month.  Those numbers are based on the number of new jobs (people getting hired, businesses opening) MINUS the number of jobs that have been cut (people getting fired, people quitting, businesses closing or cutting back).

The monthly jobs report therefore reports NET job growth or loss.  

For 41 months in this country, we have had MORE jobs being added than we have had jobs being cut.  For 48 months in the private sector (not counting federal workers, state or local workers such as teachers, firemen, cops, or people who staff the DMV, only counting people who work for private businesses), we have had MORE jobs added than we have had jobs being cut.

To reiterate:  How many jobs have been created in the last 5 years versus how many jobs have been lost?
All numbers provided on monthly jobs reports, which is what the series on jobs created/lost under Obama is based, are NET jobs numbers.  In other words, they reflect gains after all job losses are subtracted, or they reflect job losses after all gains are added. 
For the past 48 months (as of February 2014), we have had NET gains in private jobs numbers every month.  In other words, in every month since February 2010, more private jobs have been created than have been lost.  In every month since September 2010, more jobs in total have been created than have been lost.

Fact check and important information on these jobs numbers...

The above jobs numbers are from the BLS jobs report of February 2014, which was released in March 2014.  The surveys used to gather these numbers in February are taken as of the week which includes the 12th day of the month, in this case, February 12, 2014. 


  1. I appreciate all the hard work you have done on this site but something you are missing. How many full time jobs have been changed to lower paying part time jobs. It would be easy to show constant job growth if you were able to convert 1 full time employee into 2 or even 3 lower paid part time employees. I have done some research on the subject and if you adjust your numbers to full time vs part time, you would see the reason for the average income drop.

    1. I need to get back to this in more detail, Raymond, but we have actually added many more full-time jobs vs. part-time jobs over the past four years. It is a myth that full-time jobs are being converted to part-time jobs. Also, the average number of hours worked per week has increased significantly since 2010, and has stayed about the same over the past two years. It jumped up in March over January and February, probably due to improvement in the weather.

      Actually average hourly earnings, even when adjusted for inflation, have gone up and are at their highest point since the 70's. The census data looks at average household income, which finally started to rise (slightly) in 2013.

      Sorry I didn't see your comment earlier; if you see my reply, I would really like to know what sources you are using.


I appreciate intelligent comments and questions, including those that are at odds with anything posted here. I have elected not to screen comments before they are published; however, any comments that are in any way insulting, caustic, or intentionally inflammatory will be deleted without notice. Spam will also be immediately deleted.