Tech unemployment remains low, but hints of a slowdown emerge

Technology /

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Dive Brief:

  • Amid tech industry layoffs, employers economywide added 130,000 tech workers in December, according to a CompTIA review of U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data. This is a decline of 5 percentage points compared to last month’s 137,000 added tech workers.
  • The tech unemployment rate lowered by less than a percentage point, dipping down to 1.8% from the November rate of 2%. This was in line with the dip in the national unemployment rate which decreased from 3.7% in November to 3.5% in December.
  • December marked another positive month for tech workers, according to Tim Herbert, chief research officer at IT trade group CompTIA. Even amid layoffs, more employers were hiring tech talent compared to those letting them go.

Dive Insight:

Despite the overall positive month for tech workers, there were hints of slowdown. 

Businesses hired 7,000 fewer tech workers in December compared to November. The data does not reflect recent layoff announcements by technology companies, such as Salesforce and Amazon

Tech unemployment consistently trails national rate

Percentage of tech position unemployment compared to national rate

Additionally, job postings for new tech hiring declined for the second consecutive month. In December, the number fell by more than nine percentage points to 246,000 from 270,000 in November. 

Businesses were most eager to hire IT services and custom software development roles, accounting for nearly 30% of tech job postings. 

The tech unemployment rate continued to sit well below the national average, which is in line with the ongoing trend.

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