While the official US payroll numbers released on Friday showing an increase of 292,000 jobs in December came in way above expectations, the mining industry suffered its 12th consecutive month of employment decline. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics report, the 8,000 positions eliminated in December means mining and logging lost 131,000 jobs for the year. Mining drives the employment trend in this sector and accounts for essentially all losses over the month (-8,000) and over the year (-129,000). These losses were concentrated in support activities for mining says the BLS.
It was the first year of annual job losses since 2009 at the height of the global financial crisis and the biggest decline in employment since 1986. 2015 also saw the third most jobs lost in one year in the mining and logging industry according to BLS data going back to 1939. In December 782,000 were employed in the sector – that's 475,000 fewer people working than at the height in 1981. Average wages are better than the $25.24 average across industries – $31.27 an hour for all employees and $26.51 an hour on average for nonsupervisory employees in December according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, but here the trend is also down. Wages in the industry fell 1.4% for December compared to flat growth in hourly earnings in December for the total labour market.
Here's a great place to look - A directory: Find a Mining Job
Jobs for Mining - breaks down the industry by groups
Some helpful information from the Bureau of Labor Statistics - This webpage provides information relating to employment and unemployment in mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction. While most data are obtained from employer or establishment surveys, information on industry unemployment comes from a national survey of households. Here you will find an overview of the industry including the number of jobs, the unemployment rate of those previously employed in the industry, union membership and representation, data for occupations common to the industry, and projections of occupational employment change.
In recent years, the mining industry has had more job opportunities than people to fill it. Although the gap is less, the need for employees is still evident. According to BLS-Employment of mining and geological engineers is projected to grow 12 percent from 2012 to 2022, about as fast as the average for all occupations.
Why Mining Is Important and Why Americans Should Care - Two editorials have been published recently on the importance of domestic mining to jobs, the supply chain, manufacturing and national security and why Americans should care.
Don't Neglect Mining in America
America’s growing reliance on other countries for strategically important minerals is not much of an issue in this election year. It seems not to be on voters’ minds, but it really ought to be. U.S. mining policy has become increasingly inept — thoughtless and heedless of consequences. The U.S. has one of the most complex mine-permitting systems in the world, marked by delays and redundancies. Obtaining a mining permit typically takes seven to 10 years, five times longer than in Canada or Australia. Companies seeking to open a new mine sometimes must deal with 10 or more federal and state agencies.Read More
Made In America Starts With Mined In America
As our anemic economy limps along, more voices in the policy debate call out for a return to the days of U.S. manufacturing competitiveness – a time of innovation and efficiency, quality jobs and career paths resulting in steady increases in GDP. There’s nothing wrong, and a lot that’s right, with that vision. But it’s hard to imagine a renaissance of America’s manufacturing sector absent a steady supply of the minerals that provide the energy and raw material inputs for our nation’s factories. Read More