The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that 6.9 million private sector jobs were opened during the second quarter of 2011, up 554,000 over first quarter results. The same period saw private sector job losses amounting to 6.3 million, up 228,000 over the first quarter. The net change in private sector jobs for the quarter was +578,000.
Job gains due to the expansion of existing employers amounted to 5.6 million, up 5.2 million jobs over first quarter 2011. Newly opening establishments added 1.3 million new jobs to the economy during the second quarter, an expansion of 157,000 over the prior quarter. Job losses due to contracting employers rose 100,000 over the previous quarter to 5.1 million jobs. Closing establishments accounted for 1.2 million lost jobs, rising 114,000 jobs over the first quarter results.
Private sector job gains and losses accounted for 6.4 percent and 5.8 percent of private sector employment, respectively. Businesses with first time positive employment in the third month of the quarter, not including seasonal re-openings rose by 187,000 to 727,000 jobs. Businesses reporting zero employment growth for the fourth consecutive third quarter (data available through third quarter 2010) numbered 695,000.
During second quarter 2011, jobs gains outnumbered job losses in all but three sectors, including the utilities, information, and financial activities sectors. Notably, the construction industry posted a positive employment changed for the first time since third quarter 2007. Gross job gains for the sector totaled 662,000 compared to gross job losses of 626,000. The information sector continued its trend of net job losses for the sixteenth consecutive quarter, posting a loss of 5,000 jobs in second quarter 2011. The education and health services sectors, while posting overall net gains during the quarter (both adding 26,000 jobs), gained the fewest jobs since September of 1992.