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Gross job gains and losses in the fourth quarter of 2008

August 21, 2009

From September 2008 to December 2008, the number of job gains from opening and expanding private sector establishments was 6.7 million and the number of job losses from closing and contracting establishments was 8.5 million.

Three-month private sector gross job gains and losses, seasonally adjusted, December 2007–December 2008
[Chart data—TXT]

The 6.7 million jobs gained in opening and expanding private sector business establishments in the fourth quarter of 2008 was a decrease of 110,000 from the previous quarter. Over the quarter, expanding establishments added 5.4 million jobs, while opening establishments added 1.3 million jobs.

The number of gross job losses, at 8.5 million, was an increase of 713,000 from the previous quarter. During the quarter, contracting establishments lost 7.0 million jobs, while closing establishments lost 1.5 million jobs.

Gross job gains represented 6.0 percent of private sector employment, while gross job losses represented 7.6 percent of private sector employment.

From September 2008 to December 2008, gross job losses exceeded gross job gains in all but two industry sectors: utilities and education and health services.

These data are from the Business Employment Dynamics program. For more information, see "Business Employment Dynamics: Fourth Quarter 2008" (HTML) (PDF), news release USDL 09-0978.


Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Editor's Desk, Gross job gains and losses in the fourth quarter of 2008 on the Internet at (visited September 20, 2014).


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