The Big Apple added jobs at an agonizingly slow pace last month as it struggled to cope with a nearly 300,000-person drop in its workforce since the pandemic, troubling new data revealed.
According to a study released by The New School, the city’s recent unemployment rate also reached nearly 6% — nearly double the national rate — with minorities suffering the most.
“Race and ethnicity played a major role in the pandemic’s disparate economic fate, with black and Latino unemployment rates twice or more than those of white workers,” he said — noting the pandemic’s “volatile economic impact on New York workers who can least afford it.” ‘
The latest employment figures show the city gained 13,500 jobs for December. But that number is still about 12% short of matching Gotham’s pre-pandemic level, according to an analysis by The City.
The depressed economic indicators only reinforce warnings from Big Apple and state officials that the local workforce won’t fully regain its pre-pandemic strength for several more years.
“New York City was hit early, it got hit the hardest, we had the most stringent COVID mandates, and we’ve struggled extra because we rely so heavily on office workers, tourists and temporary workers,” Andrew Rigie, head of the New York City Hospitality Alliance, told The Post on Friday. .
“It’s scary,” he said. “Accommodation, food services are still down – about 50,000 jobs still missing compared to pre-pandemic levels – that’s the size of a small city!”
New York City lost nearly 1 million jobs in March and April 2020 alone, with the largest drain in Manhattan. Currently, the Big Apple has a little over 4 million employees.
According to a study released by James Parrott, director of Economic and Fiscal Policy for New York City Affairs at The New School, “The city’s job losses by the fall of 2022 – two and a half years after the start of the pandemic – will be most affected by public health business restrictions and caused by declining employment in low-wage, front-end industries exposed to the long-term effects of altered commuting and hybrid work models.”
The Big Apple’s own government workforce took a significant hit, with the biggest drop in the number of employees since the Great Recession of 2008, or 6.4%, according to a report released late last year by City Comptroller Tom DiNapoli’s office.
The Mayor’s Office of the Budget said the city does not expect to reach pre-Covid employment levels until the end of 2024. Gov. Kathy Hochul was even more skeptical, predicting last summer that it would last until 2026.
The hardest-hit urban industries in the study continue to be hospitality, retail and construction, with warehouse positions making the best return.
Vijay Dandapani, president and CEO of the New York City Hotel Association, lamented that the industry is still losing 13,000 jobs.
That’s “about 42K compared to about 55K in the entire hotel industry before Covid,” he told The Post by text on Friday.
Additionally, “We still have 11,000 rooms booked, which is why we are lagging behind our main competing cities: London and Paris,” wrote Dandapani.
“Closed hotel rooms in NYC combined with rooms occupied by migrants, etc.” It’s not enough to get through 2019, he said, referring to the city’s ongoing crisis as it tries to accommodate an influx of thousands of immigrants. A country from Mexico.
Tom Grech, president of the Queens Chamber of Commerce, said residents in his borough are particularly struggling financially because many of them work in food service and retail, industries that have seen white-collar job losses and work-from-home policies.
The city said the average office occupancy rate rose to about 47 percent after the holidays, at least as high as before December. But it seems that this number will soon rise even higher.
“It’s a vicious cycle,” Grech said of the relationship between retail and office workers when things go wrong.
Grech argued that city agencies such as Buildings, Environmental Protection and Health are not helping the situation, dragging their feet to issue permits and other approvals for businesses that could jumpstart the economy.
“The world is not waiting for city agencies to come together. “People are getting job offers from states other than the South,” Grech said.
The study’s researchers said the main reason the city’s labor force is shrinking is people moving “to the suburbs, out of state or elsewhere.”
More New Yorkers fled to Florida last year than in any other year in history, The Post reported Thursday.
The city’s job market is currently undergoing a “re-shuffle” that “resembles a real-life game of musical chairs,” with minorities largely left out, the study found.
“Employer job demands and expectations change, and many workers move from one employer to another, but thousands of low-wage workers, many of whom are black, Latino, younger, and less educated, are out of a job when the music stops. ,” the researchers said.
The Big Apple’s unemployment rate of 6.1 percent in the third quarter of 2022 is nearly double the national average of 3.5 percent, the study said. According to the researchers, these two numbers have been almost aligned in the last few years.
The 6.1% figure was also a big jump from the pre-pandemic rate in the Big Apple in the first quarter of 2020, or 3.7%.
Black urban residents suffered the highest unemployment rate among people of color, or 9.8%, in the third quarter of last year, according to the study and Gothamist. This figure was 5.6% before the pandemic.
The unemployment rate for urban Hispanics hit 7.5%, and Asians and all other residents saw their overall numbers rise to 5.3% from 5.7% and 2.6%, respectively.
These statistics compare to 3.5 percent for whites, which was 2 percent before the pandemic.
People with the least education also suffer more than others, the study says.
According to statistics, people with no more than a high school diploma are 25% more likely to lose their jobs during a pandemic.
Rigi was hopeful on the unemployment front.
“With the high unemployment rate in the city, there may still be an opportunity to train people,” he said.
“The restaurant, nightlife industry isn’t a career for some people, but it’s a way to make money while they pursue their dreams or school.”
But Grech said it’s hard to see the financial picture improving for New Yorkers until the ailing national economy also improves.
“Inflationary pressures have been felt acutely in New York,” he said.
“Seven dollars for a carton of eggs. There are enough people to pay for eggs. This bodes badly for the economy.”