Women Surpassed Their Pre-recession Employment Peak 9 Months Ago, Men Still Haven’t

With the addition of 217,000 jobs in May, the U.S. labor market has now surpassed its pre-recession employment peak, a benchmark (the pre-recession employment peak) which is of zero economic interest. Given the growth in the potential labor force since December 2007, we should have added 7.0 million jobs since then, but instead we have added a net 113,000, so the labor market is still 6.9 million in the hole.

One interesting piece is the breakdown of that jobs gap by gender. As you can see in the chart below, women actually surpassed their pre-recession peak last August, but are still 3.2 million jobs in the hole given growth in the potential female labor force since December 2007. Men, on the other hand, are still nearly 700,000 jobs below their pre-recession employment peak, and given growth in the potential male labor force, are 3.7 million jobs down.