Leisure and Hospitality Accounts for 1 in 4 Job Gains with 179K Jobs Added in February

March 7, 2022
Author: Mallory Vachon, Ph.D., Sr. Economist

February’s job gains smashed expectations, with 678,000 jobs added, as the omicron surge subsided. Because of February’s strong performance, no major industries lost jobs. Employment in the information industry was flat, but all other sectors added jobs.

Job Gains by Industry | February 2022

Trends to Watch

• Construction nears recovery. Construction added 60,000 jobs in February, bringing the industry only 11,000 jobs below pre-pandemic levels. With another month of solid growth in March, the industry should join four others – Financial Activities, Information, Professional & Business Services, Trade, Transportation & Utilities – that have already recovered.

• Leisure & Hospitality added most jobs. The industry added 179,000 jobs and remains 1.5 million jobs below pre-pandemic levels. Leisure & Hospitality has been a big leader in job gains – accounting for more than one in four national jobs added in February – largely because it was hit with some of the biggest losses early in the pandemic.

• Businesses look across industries for talent. While February’s jobs report indicates the strength and resilience of the U.S. economy, the labor market remains incredibly tight, and that is unlikely to change in the coming months. The competition for talent is changing the rules, with businesses searching in other industries to poach workers. To find and retain talent in the current environment, businesses need to look across industries and understand that competitive compensation is key.

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