September 16, 2012

Private vs Government vs Non Working Population : 1962 vs 2012

I recently looked at the change in government employment over the years.   I thought it would be interesting to look at a 'now and then' comparison of the labor force from 50 years ago in 1962 versus today.  

Most of the employment numbers I got from the BLS CES page.  I used the 'multi-screen data search' to get historical figures for government and non-government employment.   I also used the numbers for uniformed military and Dept. of Defense civilian employees from my previous article and then added those to get the total military personnel.   I used BLS site to find the labor force participation rate for people over 65 then figured the number of retired workers by multiplying the labor force participation rate of people over 65 versus the total population over 65.   The total population, and how it breaks down by age is off Census sites including the American factfinder.   I used 2010 numbers for age % and I used the 2007 military numbers.   So both those details are a bit off from the actual 2012 numbers but close enough.

First off lets look at who works and who doesn't:


Wow, less than 1/3 of the population worked back in 1962.    A lot of that is due to more 1 job families then as well as more children.   A lot more people work now.

Lets further break down the entire population including sub sections of working and non working populations :


Private employment and government employment have increased but the military employment has dropped.   Among the non working population there are fewer children and more retirees and fewer portion of the adult age population is non working.

If we just look at the working population and then break down the government versus private jobs :


More of the labor force is in private industry and we have fewer people in the military.

Breaking down the sub sections of government employment further :


Military dropped significantly from '62 till today.  The USPS was cut in half.  Federal jobs excluding military and USPS dropped a little.  Other state government jobs were flat as a % of all jobs and local government jobs were up a bit.   Educational jobs at the state and local level both grew significantly.   In 1962 we had about 2.9 million jobs in state / local education representing 5.1% of the workforce but by 2012 it had grown to 10.2 million workers which is 7.7% of all jobs.   This bit of information seems noteworthy and I will likely dig into this further in another article to try and see exactly why there are so many more education jobs.

Lastly for reference, here are a couple tables giving the raw figures I used for actual employment numbers (in thousands)

1962 2012
all employees 54891 132461
all with military 57731 133888
Military 3910 2078
non government 46040 110470
government 7781 21340
non government 47110 111121
dod 1070 651
fed 2433 2831
USPS 587.5 619.3
fed non USPS 775.5 1560.7
state 1624 5052
state edu 487.8 2389.9
state other 1136.2 2662.1
local 4794 14108
local edu 2470.6 7858.4
local other 2323.4 6249.6


1962 2012
total population 186537 312708
Military 3910 2078
non government 46040 110470
government 7781 21340
non working 128806 178820
under 15 57904 61916
over 65 17457 40965
% work >65 19.4% 18.40%
retired 14070 33427
kids 57904 61916
non worker adults 56832 83477
Military 3910 2078
private industry 46040 110470
government 7781 21340
Workers 57731 133888
Non Workers 128806 178820


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