Massachusetts vs. United States
Comparative Trends Analysis:
Total Employment Growth and Change, 1969-2017
Introduction
Massachusetts:
2017 Jobs = 4,777,678
2017 Percent of U.S. = 2.4%
U.S.:
2017 Jobs = 196,132,200
Employment numbers remain the most popular and frequently cited statistics used for tracking local area economic conditions and trends. The Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) employment estimates reported measure the number of full- and part-time wage and salary employees, plus the number of proprietors of unincorporated businesses. People holding more than one job are counted in the employment estimates for each job they hold. This means BEA employment estimates represent a job count, not a people count. Also, BEA employment is by place-of-work, rather than by place-of-residence. Jobs held by neighboring county residents who commute to Massachusetts to work are included in the employment count for Massachusetts.
Data Definition:
The BEA employment series for states and local areas comprises estimates of the number of jobs, full-time plus part-time, by place of work. Full-time and part-time jobs are counted at equal weight. Employees, sole proprietors, and active partners are included, but unpaid family workers and volunteers are not included. Proprietors employment consists of the number of sole proprietorships and the number of partners in partnerships. The description "by place of work" applies to the wage and salary portion of the series and, with relatively little error, to the entire series. The proprietors employment portion of the series, however, is more nearly by place of residence because, for nonfarm sole proprietorships, the estimates are based on IRS tax data that reflect the address from which the proprietor's individual tax return is filed, which is usually the proprietor's residence. The nonfarm partnership portion of the proprietors employment series reflects the tax-filing address of the partnership, which may be either the residence of one of the partners or the business address of the partnership. The employment estimates are designed to be consistent with the estimates of wage and salary disbursements and proprietors' income that are part of the personal income series. The employment estimates are based on the same sets of source data as the corresponding earnings estimates and are prepared with parallel methodologies. Two forms of proprietors' income-the income of limited partnerships and the income of tax-exempt cooperatives-have no corresponding employment estimates.
Total Employment, 1969-2017
Total Employment, 1969-2017
Figure 1.
Figure 1 traces Massachusetts' annual total employment for the period 1969-2017 to illustrate total employment patterns over time. During this 49-year period, Massachusetts' total employment rose from 2,678,959 in 1969 to 4,777,678 in 2017, for a net gain of 2,098,719, or 78.3%.
Total Employment Indices (1969=100): 1969-2017
Total Employment Indices (1969=100): 1969-2017
Figure 2.
Figure 2 portrays Massachusetts' total employment growth in a broader context by offering direct comparisons across time with the United States. The growth indices shown here express each region's total employment in 1969 as a base figure of 100, and the total employments in later years as a percentage of the 1969 base figure. This method allows for more direct comparison of differences in total employment growth between regions that may differ vastly in size.
Massachusetts' overall total employment growth was 78.3% over 1969-2017 trailed the United States' increase of 115.4%.
Total Employment as a Percent of the United States Total: 1969-2017
Total Employment as a Percent of the United States Total: 1969-2017
Figure 3.
Another interesting and insightful way of highlighting the total employment growth of Massachusetts is to trace its individual percentage contributions to the United States' total total employment over time, as shown in Figure 3. A rising share means a region's total employment grew faster, or declined less, than the United States' total employment, while a declining share shows it grew more slowly.
In 1969, Massachusetts' total employment totaled 2.9% of the United States' total employment, while in 2017 it equated to 2.4% thereby yielding a -0.5% share-shift.
   
 
Total Employment Share-Shift
2017 vs. 1969
 
Share-
Shift*
 
2017
vs.
1969
-0.51%
=
2.44%
-
2.94%
 
   
Massachusetts Total Employment:
Annual Percent Change, 1970-2017
Massachusetts Total Employment:
Annual Percent Change, 1970-2017
Figure 4.
Figure 4 shows the short-run pattern of Massachusetts' total employment growth by tracking the year-to-year percent change over 1970-2017. The average annual percent change for the entire 48-year period is also traced on this chart to provide a benchmark for gauging periods of relative high--and relative low--growth against the backdrop of the long-term average.
On average, Massachusetts' total employment grew at an annual rate of 1.23% over 1970-2017. The state posted its highest growth in 1984 (5.81%) and posted its lowest growth in 1991 (-4.54%). In 2017, Massachusetts' total employment grew by 1.43%
Massachusetts Total Employment:
Annual Percent Change and Decade Averages Over 1970-2017
Massachusetts Total Employment:
Annual Percent Change and Decade Averages Over 1970-2017
Figure 5.
Over the past six decades some states have experienced extreme swings in growth, and often such swings have tended to coincide with the decades themselves. Figure 5 again traces the annual percent change in Massachusetts' total employment since 1970, but this time they are overlayed with average growth rates for the decade of the 1970s, 1980s, 1990s, 2000s, and 2010-2017.
During the 1970s, Massachusetts' annual total employment growth rate averaged 1.41%. It averaged 1.92% in the 1980s, 0.69% during the 1990s, 0.39% throughout the 2000s, and 1.89% thus far this decade (2010 to 2017).
Total Employment Growth:
Average Annual Percent Change by Decade
Total Employment Growth:
Average Annual Percent Change by Decade
Figure 6.
Figure 6 compares the decade average growth rates for Massachusetts noted in the previous graph with the corresponding decade averages for the nation.
Relative to nationwide total employment growth trends, Massachusetts trailed the nation throughout the 1970s (1.41% vs. 2.21%), registered above the nation during the 1980s (1.92% vs. 1.88%), fell below the nation throughout the 1990s (0.69% vs. 1.73%), fell below the nation in the 2000s (0.39% vs. 0.74%), and outperformed the nation over 2010-2017 (1.89% vs. 1.54%).
   
 
Total Employment Growth:
Average Annual Percent Change
 
 
 
1.23
1.41
1.92
0.69
0.39
1.89
1.43
 
1.62
2.21
1.88
1.73
0.74
1.54
1.43
 
   
Job Ratios (Employment/Population): 1969-2017
Job Ratios (Employment/Population): 1969-2017
Figure 7.
The job ratios shown in Figure 7 for Massachusetts and the nation not only portray a number of important trends, they also serves as a thumbnail guide to evaluating an economy's capacity to generate enough jobs fast enough to absorb the increasing number of workers attendant to a growing population. The job ratio is the number of full-time and part-time jobs by place of work, divided by population.
Nationally, the job ratio rose from 0.45 to 0.60 between 1969 and 2017. Massachusetts' job ratio registered 0.47 in 1969, and 0.70 in 2017. Underlying the rising job ratio over the past several decades have been the increases in the labor force participation rates, with the number and proportion of women in the labor market playing a leading role.
An assortment of other factors can contribute to regional differences in the job ratio. They include differences in the proportion of elderly and retirees who no longer work and participate in the labor force, differences in the number and proportion of part-time vs. full-time workers, differences in industry composition, and differences in age and sex distribution and degree of urbanization. Also, a disproportionate number of workers commuting to work outside a state tends to lower its local state job ratio, while a net inflow of workers commuting to work inside the state tends to augment its local state job ratio.
Avoid interpreting the job ratio as the fraction (or percent) of the local population employed. This interpretation should only apply to the "employment-population ratio" statistic compiled by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) from the Current Population Survey (CPS).
Job Ratio (Employment/Population)
as a Percent of the U.S. Average:
1969-2017
Job Ratio (Employment/Population)
as a Percent of the U.S. Average:
1969-2017
Figure 8.
To highlight trends in a local job ratio relative to nationwide trends, Figure 8 tracks Massachusetts' job ratio as a percent of the national job ratio over 1969-2017.

Tip: To augment your analysis click on the column headers in the following table to rank and/or sort the data.

   
 
Massachusetts:
Total Employment, 1969-2017
 
1969
 
2,678,959
100.0
N
2.94
0.47
104.82
1970
 
2,679,010
100.0
0.00
2.94
0.47
104.87
1971
 
2,643,820
98.7
-1.31
2.89
0.46
104.04
1972
 
2,696,668
100.7
2.00
2.86
0.47
103.85
1973
 
2,786,670
104.0
3.34
2.83
0.48
103.46
1974
 
2,811,480
104.9
0.89
2.81
0.49
103.71
1975
 
2,727,603
101.8
-2.98
2.76
0.47
103.12
1976
 
2,755,729
102.9
1.03
2.71
0.48
102.65
1977
 
2,833,405
105.8
2.82
2.70
0.49
103.20
1978
 
2,957,517
110.4
4.38
2.70
0.51
104.28
1979
 
3,073,593
114.7
3.92
2.72
0.53
106.16
1980
 
3,133,686
117.0
1.96
2.75
0.55
108.72
1981
 
3,141,874
117.3
0.26
2.73
0.54
108.76
1982
 
3,143,386
117.3
0.05
2.75
0.54
110.53
1983
 
3,215,449
120.0
2.29
2.78
0.55
112.09
1984
 
3,402,387
127.0
5.81
2.82
0.58
113.98
1985
 
3,509,658
131.0
3.15
2.84
0.60
114.70
1986
 
3,604,577
134.6
2.70
2.86
0.61
116.17
1987
 
3,632,415
135.6
0.77
2.80
0.61
114.46
1988
 
3,739,313
139.6
2.94
2.80
0.63
114.47
1989
 
3,710,110
138.5
-0.78
2.72
0.62
111.79
1990
 
3,614,703
134.9
-2.57
2.61
0.60
108.31
1991
 
3,450,717
128.8
-4.54
2.51
0.57
105.40
1992
 
3,481,815
130.0
0.90
2.52
0.58
107.22
1993
 
3,547,680
132.4
1.89
2.52
0.59
108.08
1994
 
3,615,952
135.0
1.92
2.51
0.59
108.25
1995
 
3,648,939
136.2
0.91
2.47
0.59
106.96
1996
 
3,712,827
138.6
1.75
2.46
0.60
107.15
1997
 
3,802,454
141.9
2.41
2.46
0.61
107.75
1998
 
3,896,096
145.4
2.46
2.46
0.62
108.13
1999
 
3,962,492
147.9
1.70
2.45
0.63
108.35
2000
 
4,070,320
151.9
2.72
2.46
0.64
109.18
2001
 
4,075,959
152.1
0.14
2.46
0.64
109.69
2002
 
4,021,589
150.1
-1.33
2.44
0.63
109.18
2003
 
3,991,991
149.0
-0.74
2.41
0.62
108.68
2004
 
4,028,638
150.4
0.92
2.39
0.63
108.96
2005
 
4,071,326
152.0
1.06
2.36
0.64
109.03
2006
 
4,110,415
153.4
0.96
2.34
0.64
108.79
2007
 
4,202,942
156.9
2.25
2.34
0.65
109.64
2008
 
4,215,669
157.4
0.30
2.35
0.65
110.58
2009
 
4,115,997
153.6
-2.36
2.37
0.63
111.57
2010
 
4,115,539
153.6
-0.01
2.38
0.63
112.13
2011
 
4,175,311
155.9
1.45
2.37
0.63
111.71
2012
 
4,253,327
158.8
1.87
2.38
0.64
111.94
2013
 
4,353,568
162.5
2.36
2.39
0.65
112.41
2014
 
4,448,624
166.1
2.18
2.39
0.66
112.44
2015
 
4,631,712
172.9
4.12
2.43
0.68
114.86
2016
 
4,710,176
175.8
1.69
2.44
0.69
115.29
2017
 
4,777,678
178.3
1.43
2.44
0.70
115.40
Source: Calculations by the United States Regional Economic Analysis Project (US-REAP)
with data provided by the U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Economic Analysis
May 2019
REAP_PI_SA1400_1000_PN
 
   

Tip: To augment your analysis click on the column headers in the following table to rank and/or sort the data.

   
 
United States:
Total Employment, 1969-2017
 
1969
 
91,053,200
100.0
N
0.45
1970
 
91,277,600
100.2
0.25
0.45
1971
 
91,581,400
100.6
0.33
0.44
1972
 
94,312,200
103.6
2.98
0.45
1973
 
98,427,500
108.1
4.36
0.47
1974
 
100,111,800
109.9
1.71
0.47
1975
 
98,900,600
108.6
-1.21
0.46
1976
 
101,591,200
111.6
2.72
0.47
1977
 
105,042,200
115.4
3.40
0.48
1978
 
109,686,600
120.5
4.42
0.49
1979
 
113,147,100
124.3
3.15
0.50
1980
 
113,983,200
125.2
0.74
0.50
1981
 
114,914,000
126.2
0.82
0.50
1982
 
114,163,300
125.4
-0.65
0.49
1983
 
115,645,700
127.0
1.30
0.49
1984
 
120,528,100
132.4
4.22
0.51
1985
 
123,796,700
136.0
2.71
0.52
1986
 
126,232,300
138.6
1.97
0.53
1987
 
129,548,400
142.3
2.63
0.53
1988
 
133,563,900
146.7
3.10
0.55
1989
 
136,177,800
149.6
1.96
0.55
1990
 
138,330,900
151.9
1.58
0.55
1991
 
137,612,800
151.1
-0.52
0.54
1992
 
138,166,100
151.7
0.40
0.54
1993
 
140,774,400
154.6
1.89
0.54
1994
 
144,196,600
158.4
2.43
0.55
1995
 
147,915,800
162.4
2.58
0.56
1996
 
151,056,200
165.9
2.12
0.56
1997
 
154,541,200
169.7
2.31
0.57
1998
 
158,481,200
174.1
2.55
0.57
1999
 
161,531,300
177.4
1.92
0.58
2000
 
165,370,800
181.6
2.38
0.59
2001
 
165,522,200
181.8
0.09
0.58
2002
 
165,095,100
181.3
-0.26
0.57
2003
 
165,921,500
182.2
0.50
0.57
2004
 
168,839,700
185.4
1.76
0.58
2005
 
172,338,400
189.3
2.07
0.58
2006
 
175,868,600
193.1
2.05
0.59
2007
 
179,543,700
197.2
2.09
0.60
2008
 
179,213,900
196.8
-0.18
0.59
2009
 
173,636,700
190.7
-3.11
0.57
2010
 
172,901,700
189.9
-0.42
0.56
2011
 
176,091,700
193.4
1.84
0.57
2012
 
178,979,700
196.6
1.64
0.57
2013
 
182,325,100
200.2
1.87
0.58
2014
 
186,235,800
204.5
2.14
0.58
2015
 
190,317,800
209.0
2.19
0.59
2016
 
193,368,900
212.4
1.60
0.60
2017
 
196,132,200
215.4
1.43
0.60
Source: Calculations by the United States Regional Economic Analysis Project (US-REAP)
with data provided by the U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Economic Analysis
May 2019
REAP_PI_SA1400_1000_PN
 
   
Copyright © 2019. Pacific Northwest Regional Economic Analysis Project (PNREAP). All Rights Reserved.

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