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More Laid-Off Workers Find Jobs in Their Fields

USA Today (08/26/14) Paul Davidson

According to a survey of displaced workers by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 62% of the approximately four million nonfarm workers who lost jobs they held for at least three years from 2011 to 2013 were employed again by January 2014, up from 56% in January 2012 and 49% in January 2010, and just over 50% obtained jobs in their former industries, compared with 47% in January 2012 and 44% in January 2010. Millions of Americans who lost their jobs during the Great Recession of 2007-2009 were forced to leave their fields, retrain for other industries at a substantial cost, and take lower-paying positions.

BLS economist James Borbely says the share of displaced workers securing employment has lagged other recoveries, with 70% of workers displaced from 2003 to 2005 employed again by early 2006, despite total employment rising just 3%, compared with a 5% gain from 2011 to 2013.