The Trump jobs era really is different

Changing jobs.
Changing jobs.
Image: Reuters/Lucy Nicholson
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In terms of job creation, if nothing else, Donald Trump seems quite similar to his predecessor.

In Barack Obama’s last 16 months in office, the number of jobs in the US increased by 2.4%. In the first 16 months of Trump’s administration, jobs rose by 2.1%, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The strong labor market under Obama turned into a strong labor market under Trump as healthcare and education continued to boom.

When you look closer, a lot has changed for certain industries.

Under Trump, the situation for certain mining and manufacturing industries has greatly improved. Work in the category “Support activities for mining”—which includes jobs exploring mining sites—grew by almost 28% under Trump, compared to losses of about 23% in the last 16 months of Obama.

It is not clear how much Trump’s policies have led to the increase in manufacturing and for miners’ brighter prospects. Jobs in these industries are cyclical, and also grew at times under Obama. Yet it seems likely that in the short-term, Trump’s emphasis on deregulation has sparked some growth, though the long-term consequences for the environment and US economy could be quite bad.

(Note: Smaller industries tend to have greater fluctuations in the bureau’s statistics, so are more likely to reach the following list.)

While there is a clear theme to the jobs that have done well under Trump, the jobs that have done relatively poorly are more scattershot. Although still growing, the biggest slowdown was in jobs in warehousing and storage, which includes work at Amazon fulfillment centers. The onetime reality-TV star’s presidency also has not been a good time for work in the US TV, movie and music industries.