Unemployment rate for electrical engineers soars to new record

The unemployment rate for U.S. electrical and electronics engineers (EEs) hit a new record in the second quarter, while the rate for all engineers increased for a second straight quarter, according to data released last week by the Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

"Technology drives our economy, which means engineering unemployment is a bellwether for recovery and job creation," IEEE-USA President Gordon Day said. "These new data suggest we've got a long way to go as the United States attempts to regain its economic footing."

The news for EEs was particularly bad as the jobless rate more than doubled from 4.1 percent in the first quarter to a record-high 8.6 percent in the second. The previous quarterly record was 7 percent, in the first quarter of 2003.

For all engineers, the unemployment rate jumped from 3.9 percent in the first quarter to 5.5 percent in the second quarter. The rate for computer professionals steadied at 5.4 percent, after a significant jump in the first quarter. The second-quarter for all professional workers showed a modest uptick, from 3.7 percent to 4.3 percent.

The BLS reports that 29,000 EEs were unemployed in the second quarter, up from the first-quarter figure of 13,000. On a small positive note, the number of employed EEs seems to have stabilized, actually rising 2.3 percent quarter-to-quarter, but at levels well below those of the past decade.

"Taken together, these data may suggest that engineers laid off last year and early this year are having trouble securing the new engineering jobs being created," Day said.

Source: IEEE


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Citation: Unemployment rate for electrical engineers soars to new record (2009, July 7) retrieved 20 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2009-07-unemployment-electrical-soars.html
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Jul 08, 2009
oh fuck and im going to do electrical engineering...

Jul 08, 2009
I'm an EE (designing FPGA hardware). I was laid off by Cypress Semiconductor in 2002. I survived by doing Web Design for 6 years. Fortunately I now have a good job doing cutting edge FPGA design.

Jul 08, 2009
Don't worry, everything will be fine after the effects of Obama's stimulus funds kick in. The government will solve all of our problems.

Jul 11, 2009
Looks alot like the Prodigal whatever without the prodigal; welcome back into the fold !! ; or a firmer grip on whatsoever 'sector' chosen ??

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