Women make job gains in February

The Congressional Budget Office has estimated that the economy could shed 750,000 jobs this year if the spending cuts remain in place.

Overall, women have regained 74 percent, or 2 million, of the total jobs they lost from December 2007 to the low point for women’s employment in September 2010, according to an analysis on Friday by the Institute for Women’s Policy Research (IWPR).

"While February showed some welcome gains, it will take many months of job growth at this level simply to make up for the job losses during the recession, much less to restore full employment," Entmacher said. 

In the past 12 months, women have gained 931,000 of the 2 million jobs added by employers, according to IWPR.

More than 95 percent of women’s jobs growth in February was centered in three sectors — professional and business services (32,000 jobs), education and health services (24,000) and retail (21,000). They also picked up 10,000 jobs in leisure and hospitality, according to the NWLC's analysis.

However, women lost 4,000 jobs in government in February.

Since the start of the recovery in June 2009, women have lost 462,000 public sector jobs, while men have lost 280,000, according to the NWLC.

The gap between women’s and men’s employment is 1.8 million jobs in February, substantially less than at the start of the recession when it was 3.4 million jobs in December 2007, the month the recession started, according to the IWPR analysis. 

The jobless rate for women fell to 7 percent for women, the lowest level since the official start of the recession more than five years ago. 

The national unemployment rate fell to 7.7 percent last month, down from 7.9, the lowest level since December 2008. 

However, apart from this recession, adult women have not seen unemployment rates this high in nearly 30 years, NWLC said.

In contrast, men have regained nearly 62 percent (3.8 million) of the jobs they lost, the IWPR said.

In February, men’s largest job gains were in construction (48,000), professional and business services (41,000) and information (20,000).

The unemployment rates for adult black women and adult Hispanic women rose slightly in February, while rates for adult white women, adult white men, adult black men, adult Hispanic men and single mothers declined, according to the NWLC.