Drop in legal sector

Legal jobs decline for second straight month

Despite upbeat forecasts earlier this week, the monthly employment report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows slower than expected growth in the private sector, and a significant drop in jobs in the legal sector.

The report, released Friday, shows that the legal services sector lost 1,100 jobs in November after experiencing a drop in October, as well. Those losses come at a time when many analysts were expecting healthy growth. The New York Times reports that an increase of 150,000 jobs had been the consensus prediction.

Instead, only 39,000 positions were added across the board to the country's economy, pumping the unemployment rate up to 9.8 percent. The private sector saw an increase of 50,000 jobs, and BLS revised its own numbers to reveal that 160,000 new private jobs appeared in October. Temporary help services saw one of the best improvements of any industry, with 40,000 positions added, while health care jobs went up by 19,000. Government jobs dropped by 11,000.

The legal sector last saw gains in September, when BLS reported that 1,400 new jobs had been created. But the industry has failed to make any significant gains on numbers from last year. Currently there are 100 less legal jobs in the U.S. than at this point in 2009.

(Published by AM Law Daily - December 3, 2010)

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