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U. S. DEPARTMENT OF LABOR
JAMES J. DAVIS, Secretary

BUREAU OF LABOR STATISTICS
ETHELBERT STEWART, Commissioner

BULLETIN OF THE UNITED STATES)
BUREAU OF LABOR ST A TISTIC S ) • • • •
EMPLOYMENT

AND

UNEMPLOYMENT

{No. 310
SERIES

INDUSTRIAL UNEMPLOYMENT




A STATISTICAL STUDY OF
ITS EXTENT AND CAUSES
By ERNEST S. BRADFORD, Ph. D.
Member Economic Advisory Committee, President’s
Conference on Unemployment

AUGUST, 1922

WASHINGTON
GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE
1922




CONTENTS.

Page.

Introduction and summary................................................................................................ 1,2
Scope of report...................................................................................................................... 2-5
Trends in employment: Four distinct movements..................................................... 5.6
Rate of normal increase in number of factory employees......................................... 6.7
Methods of measuring unemployment............................................................................ 7-20
Unemployment of organized wage earners............................................................ 9-14
Massachusetts......................................................................................................... 9-11
New York................................................................................................................ 11-14
Fluctuations in number of employees on pay roll............................................... 14New York................................................................................................................ 14
Wisconsin................................................................................................................ 14
Massachusetts........................................................................................................ 14
Index numbers of United States Bureau of Labor Statistics................... 1518
Other records of factory employment........................ ....................................
Employment data of United States Employment Service................................ 18,19
Difference between months of maximum and'minimum employment:
19
United States Census of Manufactures, 1904,1909, and 1914..................
United States Census of Occupations, 1900........................................................... 20
Comparative value of methods.................................................................................. 20
Special investigations of extent of unemployment..................................................... 20,21
Massachusetts census of unemployment, 1885...................................................... 21
21
Cost of living survey, 1901, by United States Commissioner of Labor.. . . . .
United States Bureau of Labor Statistics’ investigation of employment in
21
the iron and steel industry, 1910................................./ ......................................
Summary of unemployment records and investigations............................................ 22,23
Partial unemployment—character and extent............................................................. 2324
Part-time employment................................................................................................
New Hampshire..................................................................................................... 24
Time lost on account of waiting and other causes............................................... 24
Industrial survey, 1919, by United States Bureau of Labor Statistics. 24Survey of the boot and shoe industry (1920) and the slaughtering and
meat packing industry (1921) by the United States Bureau of Labor
Statistics............................................................................................................. 29,30
Report of Connecticut Commission on the Conditions of Wage-earning
Women and Minors, 1912................................................................................ 30
Summary of partial-unemployment data....................................................... 30, 31
Unemployment due to sickness and labor disputes.................................................... 31-33
Sickness............................................................................................................................ 31.32
Labor disputes................................................................................................................ 32.33
Seasonal unemployment...................................................................................................... 33-42
Monthly fluctuations in number of factory employees....................................... 33-35
Causes of seasonal fluctuations................................................................................... 35-37
Typical seasonal industries......................................................................................... 37-40
Methods of reducing seasonal unemployment...................................................... 41,42
Depressional unemployment.............................................................................................. 42-44
Labor turnover and unemployment................................................................................. 44.45
Cost of unemployment: Its effect on industry............................................................. 45.46
Need of better employment statistics.............................................................................. 46
Appendix.—Statistical data of employment and unemployment........................... 47-52
Table 1.—Average number of persons employed in Massachusetts indus­
tries, by months, 1900 to 1920...............................................................................
47
Table 2.—Number of employees in manufacturing establishments in New
Jersey, by months, 1895 to 1919............................................................................ 47
Table 3.—Per cent of members of representative trade-unions in New York
State idle at the end of each month, 1904 to 1916, by industries............... 48,49
Table 4.—Index numbers of employment in representative factories in
New York State, by months, 1914 to 1921........................................................
49
Table 5.—Index numbers of employment in representative factories in Wis­
consin, by quarters, 1915, to second quarter, 1920, and by months, July,
1920, to December, 1921.......................................................................................... 49
Table 6.—Number of industrial wage earners in New Hampshire unem­
ployed and working part time in December, 1920, on June 1, 1921, and
on January 1, 1922.................................................................................................... 50-52




in

18
17

31
29

IV

CONTENTS.

CHARTS.

Page.




CO ^

Chart 1.—Proportion of persons gainfully employed in each division of industry
in the United States.................................................................................................
Chart 2.—Classes of employees and employers in industry in the United States.
Chart 3.—General trend of employment in the manufacturing industries of Mas­
sachusetts, 1900-1921........................................................................................................
6
Chart 4.—Percentage of unemployment due to lack of work or material among
organized wage earners in Massachusetts, by quarters, 1908 to 1921..................
9
Chart 5.—Fluctuations in unemployment among organized wageeamersin New
York State due to lack of work, by months, 1904 to 1915........ ............................
12
Chart 6.—Fluctuations in employment in New York, Wisconsin, Massachusetts,
and the United States, June, 1914, to December, 1921.......................................... 17
Chart 7.—fluctuations in the total number of wage earners in the manufactur­
ing industries of the United States, 1904, 1909, and 1914..................................... 34
Chart 8.—Fluctuations in number of factory workers employed in New Jersey,
by months, 1902 to 1915................................................................................................
36
Chart 9.—Monthly fluctuations in the number of employees in specified indus­
tries in the United States, 1909 and 1914— .......................................................... 38,39
Chart 10.—Percentages of unemployment of organized wage earners in New York
State in the building, clothing, and metal trades and in printing, 1904 to 1916. 40
Chart 11.—Percentage of members of trade-unions idle in the woodworking and
furniture industry of New York State, by months, 1909 to 1915......................... 41
Chart 12.—Fluctuations in employment in Massachusetts factories, 1900 to 1920,
and in New Jersey factories, 1900 to 1919................................................................... 43

BULLETIN OF THE

U. S. BUREAU OF LABOR STATISTICS
no.

310

WASHINGTON

au gu st,

1922

INDUSTRIAL UNEMPLOYMENT: A STATISTICAL STUDY OF ITS
EXTENT AND CAUSES.

INTRODUCTION AND SUMMARY.

The number of unemployed in September, 1921, was reported by
the President’s Conference on Unemployment, which held its first
session September 26, 1921, in Washington, D. C., as between three
and one-half and five and one-half millions, with a much greater
number of persons dependent upon them. No attempt was made
to estimate the number of these dependents, but on the basis of
30,000,000 employees in a total population of 105,000,000, the
number should be between 10,000,000 and 15,000,000. For so large
a proportion of our population to be without current income indicated
a deeply disturbing situation which demanded prompt attention,
and the conference centered its efforts on a program of action to
mitigate existing conditions and to prevent them from becoming
worse.
So incomplete were the data available that the committee on unem­
ployment statistics of the conference reported: “ The first step in
meeting the emergency of unemployment intelligently is to know its
extent and character, yet this conference finds itself without the data
even for an accurate estimate of the number out of work.” It is this
lack of data which necessitated piecing together information from
all possible sources in order to present even a partial picture of the
situation. Reliable unemployment statistics for a long enough time
to be significant cover so limited a portion of the country that asser­
tions regarding the extent of unemployment or the relative importance
of its causes must be carefully guarded in order to come within the
realm of what is reasonably certain. The “state of the art” as ap­
plied to the statistics respecting unemployment is such as to leave
much to be desired. The data contained in this bulletin are, there­
fore, necessarily incomplete but are presented in the hope that they
may serve as a step toward a more perfect view of the subject.
Such conclusions as seem to follow from the evidence at hand are
set forth and the statistical basis for them is presented, so far as
space is available, in order that the reader may be able to judge
for himself as to their correctness.
This report deals mainly with the extent of unemployment and
with some of the more permanent factors involved, fundamental
matters regarding which information is necessary before the merits
of particular remedies and preventive measures can be judged.



1

2

INDUSTBIAL U NEM PLO YM EN T.

The principal conclusions arrived at are as follows:
1. Industrial wage earners in those States for which data are avail­
able lose about 10 per cent of their working time through unemploy­
ment, mainly from lack of work and exclusive of idleness due to sick­
ness and labor disputes. On this basis, an average of at least a
million and a half industrial wage earners in the United States are
constantly unemployed, taking poor and prosperous years together.
2. Two and a half per cent of the working time of industrial
wage earners appears to be lost from sickness and other disabilities,
and an additional 1 per cent from labor disputes, or an average per
worker from these two causes of about 10 days per year.
3. From such data as are available, it appears that partial un­
employment, due to part-time operation of plants, shut-downs, time
lost on account of waiting, and related causes, is responsible for a
loss of about 10 per cent more of the working time of industrial
wage earners. There may be some overlapping here with time lost
from sickness and labor disputes.
4. There is a fairly regular seasonal decrease in employment in
the manufacturing industries as a whole in midsummer and again
in midwinter.
5. The unemployment due to depressional factors was more pro­
nounced in 1920-21 than in 1907-8 or 1914-15.
The statistics here presented are the result of an effort to coordi­
nate and interpret the available information regarding the unem­
ployment which exists year after year and to present it in graphic
form for greater quickness and ease of understanding. It is hoped
that presenting the more permanent factors in the unemployment
problem will call attention to its gravity, and that the pointing out
of some of the elements composing it may aid in disclosing eventually
how each may be dealt with, and what steps employers, wage earners,
and the public generally can take to make unemployment less
frequent, employment more secure, and business and industrial con­
ditions to this extent more stable.
SCOPE OF REPORT.

This discussion of unemployment relates primarily to the manu­
facturing and mechanical industries, including the building and
hand trades, and to a less extent to transportation and mining.
This is because the records kept by responsible statistical bodies
in the United States are confined mainly to wage earners in these
lines, the data available as to unemployed persons in retail and
wholesale trade, the clerical occupations, agriculture, and domestic
service being in most instances too meager to constitute a substantial
body of renable statistics. It is in the manufacturing and con­
struction industries particularly that data regarding unemployment
are most important, since the division of labor has been carried
further in these fields than elsewhere, and unemployment, which
arises partly out of the division of labor, is more acute.
The usual census classification of persons gainfully employed by
industries is not sufficient for the purpose of this study, since the
gainfully employed include both employers, self-employed persons,
and employees, and in each industry or group are included all three
classes. In “ trade,” for example, nearly half of those gainfully



SCOPE OF REPORT.

3

employed are retail storekeepers, wholesalers, and other employers
or self-employed persons, while the remainder are clerks, salesmen,
deliverymen, etc. The professional group consists mostly, but not
entirely, of self-employed persons, lawyers, doctors, dentists, etc.
In the manufacturing and mechanical industries there are a com­
paratively small number of employers; the rest are employees.
Chart 1 shows.the proportion of employers and of employees in the
principal groups of occupations.
1.—PROPORTION OF PERSONS GAINFULLY EMPLOYED IN EACH DIVISION OF
INDUSTRY IN THE UNITED STATES.
[Based on U. S. Census of Occupations, 1920.]
Hatched portions represent employees; clear portions represent employers and self-employed.

Char t

According to the Census of Occupations of 1920 (November 19,
1921), the total number of persons over 10 years of age gainfully
employed in the United States is about 41,600,000. Of these there
are about 30,000,000 persons who may properly be called employees,1
and of this number between 15,000,000 and 16,000,000 are found in
the so-called “industrial group,” which includes the manufacturing
i Prof. Willford I. King estimates the number of employees in 1918 at 30,224,000, excluding about 9,750,000
employers and members of farmers’ families wha were working on their home farms. The writer’s esti­
mate, based on a detailed study of the occupation groups of the census of 1920, is about the same, the figures
obtained being approximately 30,000,000 employees and 11,600,000 employers, self-employed persons, aDd
fanners’ children on home farms.



4

INDUSTRIAL UNEM PLO YM EN T,

and mechanical industries, the extraction of minerals, and trans­
portation. The census figures for 1920 for persons gainfully
employed in these three classes are, in round numbers, as follows:
Manufacturing and mechanical industries...........................................12,813,000
Extraction of minerals............................................................................... 1,090,000
Transportation............................................................................................ 3,066, 000
Total................................................................................................16,969,000
Subtract employers and self-employed in these classes, estimated
at about...................................................................................................... 1,065,000
Total industrial employees, about................................................ 15,904,000

C h ar t

2.—CLASSES OF EMPLOYEES AND EMPLOYERS IN INDUSTRY IN THE UNITED
STATES.
[Based on U. S. Census of Occupations, 1920.J

Employees are those persons who are employed by an employei:,
the latter usually owning and supplying most of the equipment,
including factory, machinery, and tools, while the former penorm a
certain part of the useful work required in the conversion of materials,
and receive for their services a sum per unit of time or piece agreed



TRENDS IN EM PLOYMENT— POUR DISTINCT MOVEMENTS.

5

upon. Idleness affects persons thus employed more seriously than it
does those who are employers or self-employed. The manufacturer,
the farmer, the professional man, and other independent operators
have usually greater financial resources than the wage earner, and
hence are more able to tide themselves over a period of no income.
Unemployment, therefore, relates primarily to those who are
employees, and it is in relation to them that it becomes a problem of
ublic interest. For this reason a more
E adopted here, namely, (1) employerssignificant classification has
een
and self-employed persons,
(2) industrial employees, and (3) other employees, as indicated by
Chart 2.
TRENDS IN EMPLOYMENT: FOUR DISTINCT MOVEMENTS,

In the field of industrial employment there are four distinct move­
ments or trends, all of which are going on at the same time.
In the first place there is a gradual increase in the total number of
persons employed in industry and in particular industries, the number
of employees growing eveiw year with the increase in population, and
the augmented demand for manufactured goods. This continued
increase in the number of employees, which of itself tends to be fairly
uniform, is modified by two other movements or tendencies which are
related to business conditions and which make it less regular,
namely, seasonal variations and fluctuations due to business depres­
sions.
These three industrial movements operate outside the individual
manufacturing establishment. Within the factory or plant there goes
on a “rotary” movement of replacement whereby constantly some
workers are taking the place of others, by virtue of dismissals, volun­
tary leaving, or other forms of separation. This labor turnover may
or may not affect the total number of workers employed at a given
time, but it affects the employment of the individual wage earner
who leaves a job to the extent of the time elapsing before he gets a
new place ana during which he is unemployed.
Since these movements go on simultaneously, the number of
employed at any given time is a resultant of the four forces—the first
tending to increase steadily the total number of employed; the
second tending to high employment during certain busy seasons and
low employment during slack periods; the third tending to over­
employment during periods of prosperity or high pressure and marked
underemployment during times of dull business and depressions; and
the fourth a turnover of labor within each particular manufacturing
plant, which is also responsible for a considerable amount of unem­
ployment.
The first three of these movements are illustrated by the course of
employment in Massachusetts,2 an industrial State, for which data
are available. Chart 3 represents the trend of the volume of employ­
ment in manufacturing from 1900 to 1921 in that State and is
typical in a general way of the trend of manufacturing employment
during those years in the United States as a whole. Tne curve
shows distinctly, in addition to the general increase in employ­
* See also Chart 8 (p. 36), employment curve for New Jersey. For the country as a whole such figures are
not available except at 5-year periods in the data of the U. S. Census of Manufactures.

100505°—22—Bull. 310----- 2




INDUSTRIAL U NEM PLO YM EN T.

6

ment during the period, the depressions of 1908, 1914-15, and
1921,3 while the smaller fluctuations represent seasonal changes.
Around these four main factors or industrial movements may be
grouped most of the data available regarding unemployment. Each
of them will be considered in its turn.
Ch ar t 3.—

Index No.

GENERAL TREND OF EMPLOYMENT IN THE MANUFACTURING INDUS­
TRIES OF MASSACHUSETTS, 1900-1921.
[June, 1914=100.]

RATE OF NORMAL INCREASE IN NUMBER OF FACTORY
EMPLOYEES.

Between 1899 and 1914^ the number of wage earners in manufac­
turing industries in the United States increased from 4,712,Q00 to
7,036,000, an increase in 15 years of 49.3 per cent. Part of this was
due to the natural increase in the population, and part to immigra­
tion. Between 1910 and 1914, for example, an average of about
400,000 imihigrant workers (including skilled and unskilled) came into
this country annually.4 Except in times of depression, when lack of
demand for goods causes factories to operate with reduced forces or
to shut down entirely, the growing number of workers is absorbed byexpanding industry.
Table 1 shows the increase in the number of wage earners in manu­
facturing since 1899 at five-year intervals, for the United States as a
whole and for certain leading industrial States. These figures do not
include salaried employees in manufacturing, nor any wage earners
in the building trades. It is well to remember that the number of
wage earners m manufacturing in 1919 is unduly high, because of
the fact that the census of 1920 was taken just when the number
attracted into factory work by the unusual wages of the war and
8 The figures showing the number of persons employed in the manufacturing industries in Massachusetts
upon which this chart is based are given in Table 1 of the Appendix (p. 47).
<These figures are net; that is, immigrant labor after emigrant labor is subtracted. The figures for
1915-1919, showing almost no net immigration, are for war years and not normal on that account.



7

METHODS OF MEASURING U NEM PLO YM EN T.

iostwar period
at the peak;
average is
f on account wasthe depression the 1914the last halfsomewhat too
ow
of
during
of that year;

therefore the percentage of increase between 1914 and 1919 is ab­
normal.
Table 1.—INCREASE IN NUMBER OF WAGE EARNERS IN MANUFACTURING INDUS­
TRIES IN THE UNITED STATES AND IN FOUR INDUSTRIAL STATES, 1899 TO 1919, BY
5-YEAR PERIODS.
[U. S. Census of Manufactures.]
United States.
Year.

Num­
ber.

1899.....................
1904.....................
1909.....................
1914.....................
1919....................
1899-1914.............

New York.

Massachusetts. New Jersey. - Wisconsin.

Per
Per
Per
Per
Per
cent Num­ cent Num­ cent Num­ cent Num­ cent
of in­ ber. of in­ ber. of in­ ber. of in­ ber. of in
crease.
crease
crease.
crease.
crease.

726,909
4,712,763
5,468,383 16.0 856,947 17.9
6,615,046 21.0 1,003,981 17.2
7,036,337 6.4 1,057,857 5.4
9,098,119 29.3 1,228,369 16.1
49.3
45.5

438,234
213,975
137,525
488,399 11.4 266,336 24.5 151,391
584,559 19.7 326,223 22.5 182,583
606,698 3.8 373,605 14.5 194,310
713,836 17.7 508,921 36.2 263,949
3a 4
74.6

10.1
20.6
6.4
35.8
41.3

Before proceeding to the examination of the seasonal and depressional movements, it may be well to ascertain what is the total
average unemployment due to all causes. The methods which are
in use for measuring the extent of unemployment will first be con­
sidered, as they may affect the conclusions to be reached regarding
the weight to be given to the figures in particular instances.
METHODS OF MEASURING UNEMPLOYMENT.

The extent of unemployment may be measured by several methods.
Practically, the available records kept by responsible statistical
bodies are based on two ways of measuring unemployment: (a) Fluc­
tuations from time to time in the number of unemployed members
reported by labor organizations; and (b) fluctuations from time to
time in the number of persons on pay rolls of factories, considered in
the aggregate for all industries, and by particular industries separ­
ately.
In attempting to measure the number of unemployed over a series
of years, and thus to arrive at the amount of average or normal
unemployment, either of the two methods mentioned may be used.
Figures arrived at by both of these methods were taken into account
by the President’s Conference on Unemployment. A moment’s
critical consideration will show the respects in which each may
rightly be given weight.
In order that unemployment percentages may have significance
and also be comparable with otherpercentages, it is necessary to have
a definite time factor in mind. Tnis time element should be “ con­
tinuous unemployment” or its equivalent. The statement that at a
certain time in a given city 200,000 workers are unemployed, or that
16.2 per cent of the wage earners of New York were out of work on
February 1, 1915, is of little significance for our purposes. It does
not tell us how long they were out of work- it marks only the height
of the crest of one wave, not the wave length. When, however, there
is a record of unemployment in a particular State or industry over a



8

INDUSTRIAL U NEM PLO YM EN T.

series of months, measured at regular intervals, the resulting figure
may be taken with more assurance that they represent a continuing
level of unemployment. The time factor becomes then a definite
element which makes the figures comparable with figures for unemploy­
ment in other industries or States. If 10 per cent of the total number
of wage earners are unemployed at the end of each month for a year,
it is reasonable to conclude that the percentage of employees con­
stantly out of work is about 10 per cent, even though the individual
persons unemployed differ from one month to the next. Also, if
30 per cent of the persons in a given State or industry are out of work
an average of four months per year, the loss in time and wages may
be regarded, for purposes of comparison, as equivalent to 10 per cent
out of work during the entire period of 12 months.
Figures collected regularly and consistently over a series of years
and covering many industries are manifestly of more value than
those relating to only one year or a single industry. As a matter
of fact, the data on unemployment are so incomplete for the United
States as a whole that in order to arrive at an approximately correct
estimate of the average number of persons constantly out of work
throughout the country in a normal year, it is necessary to combine
.figures covering the industries of an entire State over a considerable
number of years with those covering all industries and all States
but for only a single year. Also, it is necessary to use data secured
by both of the methods named, i. e., the number of unemployed
among organized wage earners and the fluctuations in the number
of factory workers, m order to get a fairly complete view of the
unemployment situation. Even so, the data can not be said to be
entirely conclusive or satisfactory.
The four leading classes of data are the following:
1. State records of the unemployment of members of labor organiza­
tions, found in Massachusetts (1908 to date, quarterly) and New
York (1904 to the middle of 1916, monthly); also there are some
scattering data in other States (New Hampshire, half of 1915)
covering periods of one year or less.
2. State records of fluctuations in the number of factory employees
on pay rolls over a considerable period, found in Massachusetts
(1878 to 1921, monthly); New Jersey (1898 to 1918, monthly);5
also in New York since 1914, monthly, and Wisconsin since 1915,
quarterly till July, 1920, and thereafter monthly. The last two
series cover the war period, during which employment totals were
not normal, and the fluctuations from month to month are not
necessarily significant of peace-time variations. There are similar
data for Ohio for one year, 1915, and recent figures for Arkansas
and Illinois.
3. Federal records of fluctuations in employment of factory
workers, found in the statistics of the United States Census of Manu­
factures (at five-year periods); United States Bureau of Labor
Statistics (November, 1915, to date); and United States Employ­
ment Service (January, 1920, to date).
4. Certain special Federal and State investigations, in 1885, 1901,
and 1912, which give a view of the total number of persons un­
employed in a whole State or an industry during an entire year, or
»Less comprehensive data are available in New jersey .or ±895-1897




METHODS OF MEASURING U NEM PLO YM EN T.

9

furnish a cross section of unemployment throughout the entire
country. A more detailed account of each of these sources of in­
formation follows:
UNEMPLOYMENT OF ORGANIZED WAGE EARNERS.
MASSACHUSETTS.

The direct method of attempting to arrive at the number of
unemployed is illustrated by the Massachusetts figures of industrial
unemployment, based on the reports of labor union secretaries,
showing the number of organized wage earners out of work at the
PERCENTAGE OF UNEMPLOYMENT DUE TO LACK OF WORK OR MATERIAL
AMONG ORGANIZED WAGE EARNERS IN MASSACHUSETTS, BY QUARTERS, 1908 TO
1921.

Char t 4.—

\MQQ 1909 1910 19U 1912 1913.1^14 1915 1916 1917 1918 1919 1920 1921

end of each quarter, from 1908 to date. The labor organizations
reporting to the State department of labor and industries included
in 1920 about 250,000 members, roughly 75 per cent of the total
number of union wage earners in the State. This is believed to be
a large enough proportion to be typical of the organized wage earners
of the entire State. The figures appear to have been collected with
care and on a reasonably consistent basis from year to year.
The average unemployment due to lack of work or material,
that is, exclusive of disability or labor disputes, during the years
1908 to 1921, inclusive, has been about 8.8 per cent, or approximately
26 working days per year. Chart 4 shows the percentage of un­
employment of organized wage earners due to lack of work or material,
that is, exclusive of disability or labor disputes, for each quarter
from 1908 to 1921. It also shows the comparative severity of the
present depression as compared with the previous bad times of
1907-8, and 1914-15.



INDUSTRIAL U NEM PLO YM EN T.

10

Table 2 gives the percentages of unemployment from which Chart
4 was drawn and also percentages of unemployment from all causes,
for the same periods.
T able 2 .—PER CENT OF UNEMPLOYED AMONG ORGANIZED WAGE EARNERS, IN
MASSACHUSETTS, QUARTERLY, 1908 TO 1921.1
All causes.
Unemployed at the end of—

Year.

Lack of work or material.
Unemployed at the end of—

March.

June.

Septem­ Decem­ March.
ber.
ber.

June.

Septem­ Decem­
ber.
ber.

17.9
14.4
10.6
13.9
16.2
12.5
8.7
1 9 0 8 .......................
11.0
11.4
6.4
4.8
9.4
4.6
9.5
1909..............................
3.4
4.9
7.0
5.6
7.1
10.2
4.0
5.3
5.4
1910..............................
7.3
10.4
6.6
5.6
4.2
7.5
1911..............................
9.7
3.7
6.0
5.3
4.7
9.1
3.4
3.0
5.1
1912............................ 2 14.1
6.4
11.3
6.4
6.8
10.4
7.3
4.3
1913..................... .
4.3
7.3
9.9
12.9
11.0
18.3
9.2
6.9
1914.............................
8.5
14.9
16.6
10.6
7.0
8.6
7.6
12.8
1915.............................
3.6
4.0
8.6
4.2
3.9
6.0
3.9
1.3
1.9
1916.............................
2.7
7.3
8.4
5.6
7.4
3.5
3.7
1917.........&........ .
2.7
3.5
6.0
3.0
3 6.0
3.0
1.0
9.5
1.1
1918......................
5.3
5.1
13.4
5.4
6.0
11.2
2.7
1919..............................
2.5
3.8
18.8
8.7
19.3
3.4
14.2
1920..........
31.8
16.1
28.7
30.0
25.1
23.4
19.9
21.8
1921..............................
27.3
18.8
23.4
1 Massachusetts Industrial Review, No. 7, March, 1922, p. 18.
* The percentage was unusually high because the number reported as unemployed included over 9,000
orgafibted textile workers in Lowell who were involved in a strike pending on Mar. 30,1912.
3If members who were ill with influenza had been excluded, the percentage of unemployed from all
causes would have been less than 3 per cent.

There is no reason to believe that the percentages of unemploy­
ment, if reported in the middle instead of at the end of each quarter,
or even at the end of each month, would result in a materially
different unemployment average for the vear. As to whether there
is more unemployment among the unskilled than among the skilled,
however, there is some direct evidence on this point in data collected
for the Bureau of Labor Statistics by Brissenden and Frankel, covering
2^ industrial establishments. The conclusion of these investigators
is thah“ skilled workers are about tpce as stable as semiskilled and
unskilled ones/’ the rate at w M ^^age carpers quit op are laid off
being twice as high among unskilled as among skilled workers, and
the discharge rate among the unskilled three times as high. These
rates are shown in Table 3:
T able 3.—COMPARISON OF SEPARATION RATES OF SKILLED AND UNSKILLED
EMPLOYEES IN 22 INDUSTRIAL ESTABLISHMENTS DURING ONE YEAR (1913, 1914,
OR 1915).1
Separations during year.
Separation.

Number of
workers.

Rdfteper
full-year worker.8

Percentage
distribution.

Un­
Un­
Un­
Skilled. skilled. Skilled. skilled. Skilled. skilled.
1.03
0.51
76
72
Quits.. ___1............. — ......................... 12,451 16,093
.09
.27
15
19
Discharges^................................................... 2,432 f i l l
.12
1,601
.06
10
9
1,987
Lay-offs...........................................................
16,484 22,251
1.41
.66
100
100
Total........ .............................................
1 Administration, Vol. 2, No. 5, November, 1921, p. 660.
* Based on 74,199,000 hours for skilled labor and 46,980,000 hours for unskilled labor put in during year
in the 22 establishments. A full-year worker is regarded as equivalent to 3,000 hours.



METHODS OF MEASURING U NEM PLO YM EN T.

11

There are twice as many separations among the unskilled as among
the skilled, per hundred workers employed, and there is no reason
to believe that after separation the unskilled are able to secure
employment more readily than the skilled. The skilled can often fall
back on unskilled labor if driven to it, but the unskilled are not able
to perform skilled labor. Moreover, union workers, when out of
worK, have an advantage in having the#help of the union in finding
another job. The large proportion of the unskilled among persons
applying for positions at public employment offices also indicates
that the unemployed are more frequently those who are unskilled.
In Connecticut, for example, of 27,673 males for whom the State
free employment office secured positions during the 12 months
ending June 30, 1920, 9,630 were classed as ulaborers” and 9,074
others as “ day workersof 19,759 women for whom positions were
secured, 12,461 were classed as “ day workers.” The rest represented
a large number of semiskilled or skilled trades; that is, about
two-thirds of those for whom positions were secured were unskilled.7
A high percentage of unskilled workers is similarly found among
applicants for employment in other States.
In view of this and other evidence, the conclusion is inevitable
that, taken as a whole, employment is more certain and more regular
among the skilled, and that unemployment is more frequent and of
longer duration among the unskilled. So far as the members of
unions in Massachusetts are skilled—and inspection of the trades
represented shows that for the most part they are skilled—to that
extent are the unemployment percentages of union labor likely to be
somewhat lower than labor as a whole.
The percentage of union and that of nonunion unemployment in
three leading industries of Massachusetts during the present depres­
sion appear to be about the same, as shown by figures gathered by
the State at the close of 1920. A special survey snowing the reduc­
tion in general employment in textiles, boots and shoes, and metals
and machinery, December; 18; 1920, below maximum week of 1920,
showed percentages closely approximating those of union unemploy­
ment in the same industries at the close of the quarter ending Decem­
ber 31, 1920.8
NEW YORK.

In the State of New York the members of unions reporting as to
idleness increased from about 100,000 in 1904 to about 200,000 in
1916, there being in 1914 about 140,000 represented. This is a large
enough number to be typical of unemployment in union industry in
this State as a whole, particularly since the localities and the unions
were selected with care in order to be typical of the approximately
550,000 union members throughout the State. It is also believed
to be fairly typical of unemployment in industry as a whole in this
State. This series of unemployment reports was discontinued in the
middle of 1916.®
Chart 5 and Table 4 show the fluctuations in union unemployment
in New York due to lack of work (exclusive of sickness and strikes) ;
7Report of Connecticut Bureau of Labor Statistics, Free Employment Bureau, Connecticut, 1919-20,
pp. 33—
34.
'
8 The ftguresareto befound in a speeialreport of the State department of labor and statistics to the gov­
ernor (see Report of the President’s Conference on Unemployment, p. 46).
o See Appendix, Table 3 (pp. 48, 49).




Chart 5.—FLUCTUATIONS IN UNEMPLOYMENT AMOIfG WAGE EARNERS IN NEW YORK STATE DUE TO LACK OF WORK, BY MONTHS, 1904 TO 1915.

fcO

INDUSTRIAL UNEMPLOYMENT.

0




13

METHODS OF MEASURING UNEM PLO YM EN T.

incidentally they illustrate both seasonal unemployment and that due
to depressions, the years 1907-8 and 1914-15 showing unusually large
proportions of unemployment.
T able 4.—PER CENT OF IDLENESS IN REPRESENTATIVE UNIONS IN NEW YORK,
DUE TO LACK OF WORK, AT END OF EACH MONTH, 1904 TO 1915.1
Year.
1904...........................
1905...........................
1906...........................
1907.........................
1908...........................
1909...........................
1910...........................
1911...........................
1912...........................
1913...........................
1914
.............
1915
.............

Jan. Feb. Mar. April May June July Aug. Sept. Oct. Nov. ^Dec. Mean
22.0
18.0
11.8
19.0
35.1
26.4
16.5
24.9
24.4
17.5
31.0
38.4

18.8
15.3
12.4
17.4
35.9
24.6
15.5
22.9
16.1
13.2
29.3
30.8

18.9
14.6
8.9
15.5
35.9
21.2
17.4
24.1
17.4
20.7
26.5
26.1

12.7
8.2
5.0
8.5
32.2
15.1
12.6
19.6
11.9
20.4
22.4
25.2

10.9
5.9
4.1
7.7
30.6
12.7
11.8
24.0
18.5
21.7
21.4
30.3

10.8
6.7
3.2
6.2
28.6
13.1
11.7
17.7
21.0
20.9
24.3
24.0

8.6
6.3
4.7
5.4
25.2
10.0
8.1
13.1
19.0
19.7
31.4

7.7
5.4
4.0
7.7
22.2
8.2
7.5
9.5
6.3
18.2
29.1

6.3
4.4
4.3
9.6
23.0
11.0
8.4
8.9
4.9
15.0
23.2

6.4
3.6
4.5
16.1
21.3
9.6
13.4
9.8
6.0
18.1
23.7

7.1
4.0
5.3
20.0
20.0
9.5
15.0
17.6
14.1
26.1
34.1

15.4
9.2
13.3
30.5
25.8
17.7
25.6
31.9
23.1
38.8
33.8

12.1
8.5
6.8
13.6
28.0
14.9
13.6
18.7
15.2
20.9
27.5

I

1 New York Department of Labor Bulletin No. 69, March, 1915, p. 6; Bulletin No. 73, August, 1915, p. 2.

While the average percentage of union labor unemployment in
New York from lack of work is considerably higher than that in
Massachusetts, being 16.3 in the years 1904-1915 as against 8.8 in
the years 1908-1921, there is reason to believe that this difference is
due partly to the more conservative and stable character of the
industries in New England, and partly to the high unemployment in
the clothing and building trades, which in New York State employ
so large a proportion of all the industrial wage earners as well as of
the organized wage earners. In 1914, 17.9 per cent of all the wage
earners employed in manufacturing in that State were employed m
the manufacture of men’s and women’s clothing, 8.6 per cent in the
textile industry, and only 2.6 per cent in the boot and shoe industry;
in Massachusetts, 32.3 per cent of all the wage earners in the State
were employed in textile manufacturing, and 14 per cent in the boot
and shoe industry. In the manufacture of men’s clothing, only
5,760 wage earners were employed in Massachusetts in 1914 as
against 64,927 in New York; in the manufacture of women’s clothing
in the same year, 6,076 were employed in Massachusetts as compared
with 108,393 in New York.9 ^In certain other industries the difference
in unemployment in the two States may be due to the difference in
the years covered. The opinion has also been expressed that the
greater care exercised by secretaries of unions in Massachusetts in
reporting the number of their unemployed has tended to keep the
percentage of that State low.
The process of reasoning followed by those who accept the data on
unemployment of organized wage earners in Massachusetts and New
York as typical of unemployment as a whole in these States and in
other large industrial States is as follows:
(a)
The unemployment of union wage earners represents roughly
industrial unemployment as a whole in each State, since union
workers constitute in these States so considerable a proportion of
the total workers, but the exact percentage is possibly too low.
a U. S. Census of Manufactures, 1914.

100505°—22—Bull. 310-----3




14

INDUSTRIAL UNEM PLO YM EN T.

(5) These two leading industrial States, one the foremost and the
other the fourth in point of numbers employed, and possessing
widely diversified industries, are probably typical of other large
industrial States. Examination of the industries involved in these
States does not reveal any reason for believing that unemployment
will differ greatly in industries not represented m these States.10
FLUCTUATIONS IN NUMBER OF EMPLOYEES ON PAY ROLL.

The method of measuring unemployment by comparing emplovment levels from time to time has usually taken the form of a monthly
average of persons on the pay rolls of representative factories, exan index number, the fluctuations in which
{>ressed in the form of indicate the relative number of persons em­
rom month to month
ployed at different seasons. The numbers of persons reported as
employed by a number of factories are added ana the total compared
with that for the same factories for the previous month. Records
which make possible such an index of employment have been kept
by three States and by the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics.
NEW YORK.

The New York State Department of Labor in June, 1914, began
the collection of data as to the number of employees on the pay rolls
of representative factories. From 1,400 to 1,600 factories and from
450,000 to about 600,000 wage earners, or approximately a third of
the industrial employees of the State, are represented in this series.
These factories were carefully selected so as to be typical of manu­
facturing establishments of the entire State. An index number of
employment and of wages is published by the State each month for
all industries as a whole and for a considerable number of separate
industries, using the figures for June, 1914, as the base, or 100 per
cent.®
WISCONSIN.
The State of Wisconsin uses a similar index, the figures going back
to the early part of 1915. Quarterly index numbers from 1915 to
July, 1920, were computed from data collected in connection with
the workmen’s compensation act; monthly figures have been pub­
lished since that date by the State industrial commission, covering
about 200 establishments which contain about a third of the industrial
wage earners of the State.6 The employment curve parallels closely
that of New York.
MASSACHUSETTS.
Massachusetts takes an annual census of manufactures at the end
of each year, which shows the number of wage earners employed
each month by the industries of the State. These figures began with
1878 and extend to the present,11thus covering over 30 years and per­
mitting the charting of an employment curve of significance. The
number of employees ranges from about 400,000 m 1900 to over
750,000 at the peak in 1920, dropping to about 550,000 at the close
of 1920.
10 See discussion of theiron and steel industry on p. 21.
o See Appendix, Table 4 (p. 49).
6 See Appendix, Table 5 (p . 49).
11 See Appendix, Table 1 (p. 47).




METHODS OF MEASURING U NEM PLO YM EN T.

15

INDEX NUMBERS OF UNITED STATES BUREAU OF LABOR STATISTICS.

The United States Bureau of Labor Statistics publishes each month,
in the Monthly Labor Review, the number of persons on the pay rolls
of representative factories in a considerable number of separate
industries throughout the United States. The series began with
November, 1915, and represented in 1918 some 1,400 establishments,
with 600,000 to 800,000 employees, in 13 industries. The number of
establishments reporting for February, 1922, numbered about 725, in
13 industries and. 31 States. The number of establishments varies
from month to month because some concerns fail to report; hence
the number of persons employed in identical establishments are com­
parable as between any two consecutive months, but not for all
months. The curve resulting from charting the chain relatives of
this series, while not entirely satisfactory, since exactly the same
factories are not represented for all months, corresponds closely to
the employment curves of New York, Massachusetts, and Wisconsin,
and indicates that similar employment conditions exist in these
States and in the entire country, as represented by the industrial
concerns covered by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Chart 6 shows the fluctuations in employment based on index num­
bers of these three States and the Bureau of Labor Statistics. All
four indexes are based on June, 1914, as 100, except that for Wis­
consin, where a substantially similar result was secured by accepting
November, 1915, as 105. While the index of the Bureau of Labor
Statistics as here presented starts with June, 1914, as 100, the curve
from June, 1914, to November, 1915, represents an average of the
New York and Massachusetts figures, which were regarded by the
Bureau of Labor Statistics as fairly typical of the country as a whole
for this period.12 While the curves cover the war period, and there­
fore the fluctuations do not represent the usual peace-time variations
in employment, nevertheless, they show clearly the peaks of 1917,
1918, and the post-war peak early in 1920; they also indicate a close
relative similarity of the different indexes. The severity of the
present depression, as compared with that of 1914-15, is shown by
the extent of the drop in 1921 below the line of normal increase.
Table 5 gives the four series of index numbers, all on the basis of
June, 1914, as 100. 13
12 See “ Trend of employment in the manufacturing industries in the Unites States, June, 1914, to Decem­
ber, 1921,” by Ethelbert Stewart, U. S. Commissioner of Labor Statistics, in Monthly Labor Review,
March, 1922, p. 1.
13 See Monthly Labor Review, March, 1922, pp. 3 and 4, which contains the following explanatory
matter:
“ The Massachusetts figures include all manufacturing establishments in that State. The figures for
New York cover a very wide range of establishments, and those for Wisconsin a somewhat smaller but
still quite comprehensive number. The establishments covered by the United States Bureau of Labor
Statistics index are for the most part the older and more settled establishments in the various industries
represented. Since the bureau has gone upon the theory that its figures must be for identical establish­
ments over a long period of time its index has not responded quickly to sudden changes in industry. To
take an example: During the war period there were speculative and even spectacular operations m silk,
factories employing considerable numbers of people springing up throughout the East in large numbers.
These abnormally swelled the number of employees engaged in the manufacture of silk, but this increase
was only partially indicated in the Bureau of Labor Statistics index because its reports were from the
old-established plants that responded slowly and in no spectacular way to the boom in silk. Similarly
when the mushroom establishments collapsed and threw their thousands of workers out of employment,
this was only mildly reflected in the bureau's index number because the old-established concerns had
not been violently influenced by either the boom or the collapse. Assuming that there is a line of natural
progress of employment in the manufacturing industries the Bureau of Labor Statistics curve of employ­
ment would more closely approximate that line than would yearly census figures during the war period.
“ In fact all of these index numbers fall far short of showing the increase in the number of persons em­
ployed in the manufacturing industries in the United States as a whole between 1914 and 1919, as according
to the census the increase was 29.3 per cent. This would indicate that the index of the United States
Bureau of Labor Statistics and probably that of New York ought to have reached in the fall of 1919 a point
as high as Wisconsin reached in early 1920, and that none of the indexes really cover the volume of workers




16

INDUSTRIAL UNEM PLO YM EN T.

T able 5.—INDEX NUMBEKS OF PERSONS EMPLOYED, BASED ON STATISTICS OF NEW
YORK, MASSACHUSETTS. WISCONSIN, AND U. S. BUREAU OF LABOR STATISTICS,
JUNE, 1914, TO DECEMBER, 1921.
[June, 1914=100.]
U. S.
U. S.
Bureau Wis­
Bureau Wis­
New Massa­ of consin Year and month. New Massa­ of consin
Year and month. York. chu­ Labor (after
chu­
York. setts. Labor (after
setts. Statis­ Nov.
Nov.
Statis­ 1915).
tics.1 1915).
tics.
1914.
June...........
July...........
August___
September.
October__
November.
December..
1915.
January...
February..
March.......
April.........
May...........
June...........
July...........
August__
September.
October__
November.
December..
’ 1916.
January...
February..
March.......
April.........
May...........
June...........
July...........
August__
September.
October__
November.
December..
1917.
January...
February..
March.......
April.........
May...........
June...........
July...........
August__
September.
October__
November.
December..
1918.
January...
February..

100
97
92
96
95
93
92

100
97
96
96
97
96
95

92
94
94
95
97
98
97
96
101
102
106
108

93
94
95
95
95
95
95
97
99
102
104
105

93
94
95
95
96
97
96
97
100
102
105
107

108
111
111
115
113
113
112
113
117
117
120
122
121
121
123
121
120
119
118
116
118
120
121
122
• 121
123

108
110
112
112
111
110
110
110
111
113
115
117
117
118
119
116
114
114
112
112
114
116
118
119
117
118

106
108
110
109
110
110
110
110
110
112
113
114
116
116
116
114
114
114
114
112
110
112
115
116
115
114

1918.
March.......
A pril.:....
May...........
June..........
Jitfy.......
August__
September.
October__
November.
December..
1919.
January...
February..
March.......

100
97
94
96
96
95
94

105
112
113
110
117
122
118
117
121
124

June.
July...........
August___
September.
October...
November.
December..
1920.
January...
February..
March.......
April.........
May...........
June..........
July...........
August___
September.
October__
November.
December..
1921.
January...
February..
March.......
April.........
May...........
June...........
July...........
August___
September.
October__
November.
December.

124
123
123
123
125
122
122
117
120
119

120
119
119
119
118
117
116
114
117
115

115
114
112
112
114
113
113
109
111
112

113
112
111
111
110
110
113
115
116
115
118
122

114
111
111
111
113
115
117
119
120
121
123
125

109
102
103
103
105
107
109
108
109
105
108
111

123
122
125
124
122
121
121
118
117
115
108
100

124
122
123
122
121
118
114
112
109
107
100
91

113
112
114
114
115
115
107
107
104
100
95
89

93
94
95
94
92
90
88
88
92
94
94
94

91
92
91
90
92
92
93
92
93
93
93
94

79
85
86
85
86
87
86
88
89
91
92
92

122
124
123
122
115
118
125
130
125
127
125
122
116
108
100
88
90
87
82
81
79
79
81
83
83
83
83

1Weighted by number employed in each industry in 1914. Following are the weightings used (thou­
sands omitted).
Iron and steel............................................................278 Men’s clothing........................................................ 174
Automobiles..............................................................127 Leather................................................................. 56
Car building..............................................................394 Boots and shoes..................................................... 199
Cotton manufacturing.............................................379 Paper..................................................................... 88
Cotton finishing...................................................... 48 Cigars....................................................................... 153
Hosiery and underwear..........................................151
2,314
Woolen.......................................................................159
Silk............................................................................ 108
during the war period, all being too low. [They are probably all the more satisfactory on that account since
1920.]
“In determining a line of natural progress the census statistics for wage earners in manufacturing estab­
lishments in the United States for the census years 1899 (4,712,763), 1904 (5,468,383), 1909 (6,615,046), and
1914 (7,036,337), or for a period of 15 years prior to the beginning of the World War have been used. From
these census figures it is found that the average geometric rate of growth in employment was 2.7 per cent
per year in the 15 years covered. This for a spread of seven years means an increase of 20.6 per cent in the
number of wage earners.”




CHART

6.—FLUCTUATIONS IN EMPLOYMENT IN NEW YORK, WISCONSIN, MASSACHUSETTS, AND THE UNITED STATES, JUNE, 1914, TO DECEMBER, 1921.

METHODS OF MEASURING UNEMPLOYMENT,




18

INDUSTRIAL U N EM PLO YM EN T.

OTHER RECORDS OF FACTORY EMPLOYMENT.

The State of New Jersey kept a record of the number of wage
earners employed in its industries from 1898 14 to 1918, inclusive.
These figures cover almost all of its industrial wage earners and
afford an excellent general index of employment in that State.
The number of employees covered ranges from about 150,000 in
1898 to about 500,000 in 1918. Figures for 1919 were collected by
the United States Census of Manufactures; no figures for 1920 were
collected, nor are those for 1921 yet available.1
15
4
The State of Ohio kept a similar record of factory employees for
one year, 1915, the figures of which reflect the rapid war-time in­
crease of industrial wage earners from month to month during that
year.
Arkansas and Illinois have recently commenced to keep such a
record, which in time will be of value in indicating employment
conditions in those States.
EMPLOYMENT DATA OF UNITED STATES EMPLOYMENT SERVICE.

The United States Employment Service made two special investi­
gations—one in January, 1921, and the other in September, 1921—
securing directly from certain States and cities figures showing, in the
first investigation, the reduction in number of persons reported as
employed in January, 1921, and, in the second, m September, 1921,
as compared with the number employed in January, 1920.
The accuracy of the estimate that 3,473,000 fewer persons were
employed in industry in January, 1921, than in January, 1920,
arrived at in this manner, depends upon the extent to which the data
were collected through trained and responsible persons and on how
far miscellaneous guesses were incorporated with estimates of prop­
erly organized statistical bureaus. From such evidence as was and
is available it appears that this report presents a reasonably close
figure for the unemployment existing at that time in some of the
more important States. Inherently also it is somewhat more con­
sistent than the estimate of September, 1921.
These special estimates of the reduction of employment between
January, 1920, and January or September, 1921, are not to be con­
fused with the monthly figures of employment, together with an
explanatory curve, published since then by the United States
Employment Service in the Industrial Employment Survey Bulletin.
These monthly figures are intended to indicate currently the trend of
industrial employment. They are based on pay-roll data secured
each month from about 1,400 concerns, each of which usually employs
500 or more persons, representing an aggregate of 1,500,000 wage
earners located in 65 industrial centers. They cover manufacturing
concerns in 14 groups of industries, following the census classification.
Tl^e first issue of this series compared the total number of workers on
pay rolls in such plants in February, 1921, with those in January,
1921, and similar comparisons have been presented for each month
since. There is also presented in the same bulletin an estimatej
________________________________________________________________________________,__________
14 A small number of concerns were covered by reports in 1895,1896, and 1897.
i&See Chart 8 (p. 36) for curve showing New Jersey employment figures up to and including 1915; also
Appendix, Table 2 (p. 47).




METHODS OF MEASURING UNEM PLO YM EN T.

19

by cities, of increases or decreases in factory employment since the
preceding month.
The method is somewhat similar to that employed by the State
industrial commissions of Wisconsin and New York, and the United
States Bureau of Labor Statistics, but the figures take in a wider
geographical area than those of any single State. The data, however,
are from the larger concerns and are not necessarily representative
in all cases of the smaller establishments. The series is too recent
to throw much light on the average amount of unemployment over
a series of years.
DIFFERENCE BETWEEN MONTHS OF MAXIMUM AND MINIMUM EMPLOYMENT: UNITED STATES CENSUS OF MANUFACTURES, 1904, 1909,
AND 1914.

The data of the United States Census of Manufactures for 1904,
1909, and 1914, show for industry as a whole and for each industry
separately the average number of persons employed on the 15th day
of each month or the nearest representative day, during the census
year. While figures are missing for the four years intervening be­
tween censuses, the available figures indicate the percentage of fluc­
tuation between high and low employment levels during the year
for which data are given.
For all industries taken together the per cent of difference between
the number employed in the highest and in the lowest month in 1904
is 7.3, in 1909, 11.4, and in 1914, 8.3, the average being 9.16 The
1919 figures are not used, though available, on account of not being
typical of normal manufacturing years.
This method of measuring unemployment (by the difference in the
total number of employed on factory pay rolls during the months of
greatest and of least employment), as presented in such figures as
these published by the United States Census of Manufactures or the
employment index of the Department of Labor of the State of New
York, is open to an important objection, namely, that when all per­
sons in industry are taken as a whole, the range between the maxi­
mum and the minimum number employed is much less than if each
industry is considered as a separate unit and the separate ranges
are averaged. If this is done for 27 important industries employing
over 5,000 persons as shown by the Census of Manufactures of 1914,
the aggregate covering two-thirds of all the wage earners in manu­
facturing in that year, the per cent of difference becomes about 15
per cent. When localities also are considered, as factors limiting the
free passage of labor from one point to another, as well as the limita­
tions of particular trades or industries, already referred to, the per
cent of difference between the number employed in the maximum
and in the minimum month mounts still higher, possibly to 20 or 25
per cent. If this difference is 20 per cent, that is, in the lowest
month only 80 per cent as many are employed as in the highest month,
it is equivalent roughly to 90 per cent oi steady employment, or 10 per
cent constantly unemployed. This figure should not be given too
great weight, however, except as it supports other figures of more
positive import, such as those found in Table 6 (p. 22).
w Abstract of the Census of Manufactures, 1914, p. 437.




INDUSTRIAL U NEM PLO YM EN T.

2 0

UNITED STATES CENSUS OF OCCUPATIONS, 1900.

In connection with the United States Census of Occupations of
1900, each person gainfully employed was asked how many months
during the preceding year (1899) he had been unemployed. The
form of the question seems necessarily to have affected the replies,
and the resulting percentage of unemployment can not be accepted
as of equal weight with that based on the series of years reported in
Massachusetts and in New York.
COMPARATIVE VALUE OF METHODS.

In a general way, it may be said that the method of measuring
unemployment by means of the reduction in employment between
high and low points, that is, from the top down, has the advantage of
accurate (pay-roll) records of persons employed, but it fails to cover
a certain percentage of the constantly unemployed. By this is meant
not exclusively the unemployable, but also those persons (of whom
there is always a certain per cent) who at any given time are changing
jobs and hence on no pay roll; likewise those who at that time are
sick or on strike, or otherwise out of a job. These are not always
the same individuals, but the total average percentage appears to
remain fairly constant.
There is also another objection, as already suggested, namely, that
the total unemployment percentage thus obtained for all industries
as a whole does not represent the true unemployment situation, since
it assumes one large labor reservoir instead of a series of compart­
ments. To show unemployment more correctly the percentages of
unemployment of particular industries in the area under considera­
tion should be averaged, and the separate localities in which the
industry is situated should also be taken into account in order to
obtain a more correct estimate.
On the other hand, the method of estimating unemployment by
measuring the unemployed among organized workers—from the
bottom up, as it were—depends for its value upon the accuracy and
good judgment of the union secretary reporting. He is in a position
to know conditions within his own union, provided it is not of too
large a size. He may, however, be inclined to exaggerate the exist­
ing conditions. Several statisticians closely familiar with these
figures believe that the union figures are probably close approxima­
tions to fact, but that the union secretary is likely to report fewer
persons unemployed during good times, ana more unemployed during
seasons of depressions than there actually are.
It is not quite correct to use the term “from the bottom up,” since
these union unemployment reports do not give any adequate
measure of the unemployment which exists among a great mass of
unskilled and unorganized workers. Consideration of this fact
would lead to the belief that the percentage of general unemploy­
ment is somewhat greater than that of union unemployment.
SPECIAL INVESTIGATIONS OF EXTENT OF UNEMPLOYMENT.

The figures collected by Massachusetts and New York, extending
in each case over 12 years, and comprising the most comprehensive
of all the data at hand, are supplemented oy three special investiga­
tions which throw some additional light on the problem of what per­
centage of industrial wage earners are normally out of work.




SPECIAL INVESTIGATIONS OF EXTENT OF UNEMPLOYMENT.

21

MASSACHUSETTS CENSUS OF UNEMPLOYMENT, 1885.

The earliest of these is a special census of unemployment taken by
the State of Massachusetts in 1885,18 covering not only the manufac­
turing industries but all persons gainfully employed in that State.
Although it relates to onty a single year, it covers over 800,000 persons.
By this special census it was found that 30 per cent of all the persons
canvassed were out of work an average of 4 months during that year,
which is equivalent to 10 per cent idle during the entire 12 months.
This percentage exceeds by a little over 1 per cent the average unem­
ployment of organized wage earners (8.8 per cent) over a series of 13
years in this State, indicating that the unemployment percentage of
1885 is probably a little higher than the average for other years.
On the other hand, as already suggested, 8.8 per cent is probably
somewhat too low a percentage for the unorganized and unskilled
labor of the State. Also, since the records show that unemployment
in the State of Massachusetts, an old and settled Commonwealth, is
lower than that in other less stable industrial States, particularly
New York, it is entirely possible that it may be lower than the average
ndustrial unemployment of the country as a whole.
COST OF LIVING SURVEY, 1901, BY UNITED STATES COMMISSIONER OF
LABOR.

The survey made by the United States Commissioner of Labor in
1901,19an average business year, of 24,402 families widely distributed
throughout the country, disclosed nearly the same number of days
of unemployment for, each head of a family in a normal year (1901)
for the United States (4.7 weeks, or 28 days) as were lost in Mas­
sachusetts in 1885, a poor year (30 days). Some 12,000 beads of
families, or about half the total number, were out of work an average
of 9.43 weeks each, which is equivalent to an average of 4.7 weeks
lost by the entire number. This indicates that the wage earner is idle
not far from 10 per cent of the number of working days in the year.

UNITED STATES BUREAU OF LABOR STATISTICS’ INVESTIGATION OF
EMPLOYMENT IN THE IRON AND STEEL INDUSTRY, 1910.

A special investigation of employment conditions in the iron and
steel industry, one conspicuous industry not well represented in
either the Massachusetts or New York figures, was made in 1910,
a prosperous business year, by the Bureau of Labor Statistics in
response to a resolution of the United States Senate.20 This investi­
gation, which included nearly 100,000 employees*, showed that 7 weeks
was the average time lost by these steel workers from all causes.
Sickness, which was the cause of a loss of 1^ weeks per worker per
year, and accidents, causing the loss of 4 days per worker per year,
were included. Excluding these factors leaves about 29 days as the
average time lost annually from other causes than sickness and
accidents, mainly lack of work.
is Eighteenth Annual Report of the Bureau of Statistics of Labor of Massachusetts, 1887.
19 Eighteenth Annual Report of the Commissioner of Labor, 1903.
2 Conditions of Employment in the Iron and Steel Industry in the United States, Vol. III. S. Doc.
0
No. 110, 62d Cong., 1st Sess., 1911.
100505 ° - r 22 — Bull. 310 ------ 4




22

INDUSTRIAL U NEM PLO YM EN T.

SUMMARY OF UNEMPLOYMENT RECORDS AND
INVESTIGATIONS.

Table 6 summarizes the several investigations as regards the number
of days of unemployment of industrial wage earners due to lack of
work or materials, excluding disability and labor disputes. As has
been pointed out, the figure for organized wage earners in Massachu­
setts is probably too low to be representative of all wage earners, since
unskilled and unorganized workers are more frequently unemployed;
also, the percentage of unemployment in a relatively stable State
such as Massachusetts is probably lower than that in States of a less
settled labor composition such as New York, and therefore in the
country as a whole. For a similar reason the average for New York
is believed to be somewhat higher than for the rest of the country.
T able

6.—SUMMARY TABLE OF AVERAGE ANNUAL UNEMPLOYMENT.

Records or special survey of—

Massachusetts Department of Labor and
Industries.1
United States Commissioner of Labor3........
United States Bureau of Labor Statistics4. .
New Hampshire Bureau of Labor6. .............
Massachusetts Bureau of Statistics of Labor7.
New York Bureau of Labor Statistics 8___
Average

Number
Year. of persons
included.
1908 100,000 to
to 2 296,917
1921
1901
24,402
1910 90,757
1915
6,000
1885 816,470
1904 96,075 to
to
192,613
1910
/ Over \
\1,250,000/

Class of persons.

Average time
unemployed
during year
for all em­
ployees
covered.
Per Work­
ing
cent. days.

Members of labor organiza- 8.8
tions.
Heads of families in 33 9.3
States.
Workers in steel industry. 9.6
Members dflabor organiza­
tions.
All persons gainfully occu­ 10.0
pied.
Members of labor organiza­ 16.3
tions.

26
28
5 29
29
30
49

llAbout About
10 30

1 Massachusetts annual reports on the statistics of labor, 1908-1919; quarterly reports on employment,
Massachusetts, 1919;, Massachusetts Industrial Review, 1920 and 1921.
2Jan. 1,1921.
8 Eighteenth annual report of the U. S. Commissioner of Labor, 1903, p. 43.
4 Report on Conditions of Employment in the Iron and Steel Industry in the United States, Doc. No.
110, 62a Cong., 1st sess., Vol. Ill, pp. 21, 214.
6 Seven weeks, from which 4 days of idleness due to accidents and 1$ weeks from sickness have been sub
tract ed
6 One-half year, 1915: Eleventh biennial report of New Hampshire Bureau of Labor, 1915-16, Vol. 13,
p. 26.
7 Eighteenth annual report of the Massachusetts Bureau of Statistics of Labor, Boston, 1887, p. 294.
8 New York State Department of Labor: Reports of the Bureau of Labor, 1897-1912; Idleness of Organ
ized Wage Earners in 1914, Special Bulletin 69; Course of Employment in New York from 1904 to 1916,
Special Bulletin 85.

While the average of these various percentages of unemployment
can not be arrived at by a purely mathematical process, all tne figures
appear to center about a common point and to indicate that the aver­
age wage earner loses through involuntary unemployment a little
over 30 days per year or about 10 per cent of his possible maximum
working time. To express it in terms of continuous unemployment,
it means that if these figures hold true for the United States as a whole
an average of 10 per cent of all industrial wage earners are out of
work all the time. Of 15 or 16 million industrial wage earners, 1^
million are thus believed to be constantly out of work, averaging
both good and bad years, or more than a million and a quarter idle




PARTIAL UNEM PLO YM EN T---- CHARACTER AND EXTENT.

23

in the manufacturing and mechanical industries alone.21 The figure
falls below this average in years of unusual prosperity, but in seasons
of poor business rises much above it. For years of normal business
a million unemployed is thus seen to be a low figure, particularly if
wholesale and retail trade and the clerical occupations be included.22
As to the theory that this average does not make proper allowance
for incidental employment secured occasionally in lines of industrial
activity other than their regular occupations, and that therefore
these figures do not represent actual unemployment, there is a lack
of conclusive data on this point. Such evidence as there is, however,
indicates that comparatively .few persons find other employment.
In one of the most comprehensive investigations ever made, that of
the Massachusetts special census of unemployment, it was found that
of 241,589 persons reported as unemployed at their principal occu­
pation during some part of the year represented by the 12 months
preceding May 1, 1885, only 10,758, or less than one-twentieth of
the whole number were reported to have found work during the year
at some other occupation.23
Other evidence from employment managers and observers of labor
conditions in large centers is to the effect that the average employee
does not easily change his trade, and it is only the wage earner of
exceptional initiative who goes out and gets a job in a different line.
Limitations of training and temperament, as well as general inertia,
tend to prevent employees from finding employment in other than
their regular trades. This does not apply, it is true, to common
labor, which in some respects is of a very fluid character, but which
has equally great limitations of skill and adaptation. In times of
unemployment common labor is usually the first to be affected and is
the hardest hit.
PARTIAL UNEMPLOYMENT— CHARACTER AND EXTENT.

The loss by the average wage earner of 30 days per year due to
total unemployment does not include the time lost from partial
unemployment, that is, unemployment while “ on the job.” The
records of unemployment take no account of the hours or half days
during which the wage earner is temporarily idle, waiting for
materials to arrive, for repairs which are under way to be finished,
or until some semifinished part required is completed by another
department of the same factory. He is not usually counted as
unemployed unless he is definitely off the pay roll and out of a job.
This partial unemployment occurs in small units, but in the aggregate
is responsible for a large volume of lost time and reduced earnings. It
is reduced earnings, after all, which measure the loss of comforts of the
wage earner and the reduced business of merchant and manufacturer.
This partial unemployment or underemployment takes two forms,
which for convenience may be distinguished as (1) part-time employ­
ment and (2) time lost on account of waiting and other causes.
21 See estimate that between 1902 and 1917 there was never a period when less than a million wage
earners were out of work, in Fluctuations in Unemployment in Cities of the United States, 1902-1917, by
Hornell Hart, Cincinnati, 1919.
22 The conclusion of the committee on the elimination of waste in industry of the Federated American
Engineering Societies is as follows:
“But in the best years, even the phenomenal years of 1917 and 1918, at the climax of war-time industrial
activities, when plants were working to capacity and when unemployment reached its lowest point in 20
years, there was a margin of unemployment amountmg to more than a million men.”—Report on Waste in
Industry, 1921, p. 15.
23 Eighteenth annual report of the Massachusetts Bureau of Statistics of Labor, Boston, 1887, p. 289.




24

INDUSTRIAL U NEM PLO YM EN T.

PART-TIME EMPLOYMENT.

During periods of depression or seasons of poor busipess otherwise,
the manufacturing plant or some division of it may be operated only
a few days per week or a few hours per day. Such a condition
existed in many industries during a great part of 1921; the most
energetic efforts on the part of manufacturers were required to keep
their employees engaged and the wheels moving at all. This is
rightly chargeable as a form of depressional unemployment and has
been very high during many months of the past year and a half.
N E W H A M P S H IR E .

A survey of employment in the manufacturing industries made by
the State of New Hampshire in December, 1920,24shows that of 91,267
employees normally or usually employed on full time in 884 estabhshments, 34,824, or about 37 per cent, were idle, mainly for lack of
orders, and 18,374, or about 20 per cent, were working part time.
A second survey, .June 1, 1921, showed that of 89,701 employees
normally employed.4n 645 establishments, 19,317, or 22 per cent,
were idle, mainly for lack of orders, and 16,084, or 18 per cent, were
working part time. A third survey, made January 1, 1922, showed
that in the 615 establishments reporting, 13,164, or 15 per cent of
the 8^584 employees normally employed, were idle, mainly from
lack of orders, and 11,581, or 13 per cent of the total number, were
working part time.
The degree of unemployment involved in such part-time work is
not stated and is difficult to measure in the absence of records show­
ing the number of days the plants were operated. Part-time employ­
ment occurs most frequently during business depressions and also
in many industries at tlieir slack seasons.
TIME LOST ON ACCOUNT OF WAITING AND OTHER CAUSES.
IN D U S T R IA L S U R V E Y , 1919, B Y U N IT E D S T A T E S B U R E A U O F L A B O R S T A ­
T IS T IC S .

Even during prosperous times employees frequently work less than
the number of full-time hours per week, from various causes.25 The
best data on the extent of this form of unemployment are found
in an industrial survey made by the Bureau of Labor Statistics in
1918 and 1919 of over 1,900 establishments in 24 industries. Figures
taken from actual pay-roll records covering more than 300,000
wage earners show the average number of hours actually worked
per week in comparison with the number of hours which constitutes
full time in each occupation per week.
These figures, secured for the purpose of throwing light on this
very point, are unusually valuable for the reason that they cover
such a variety of industries and so large a number of occupations
and wage earners. On the other hand, the causes of partial unem­
ployment are not clearly indicated.
The percentage of full time worked by employees in the various
trades in the leather industry, for example, is shown in Table 7.
2* See Appendix, Table 6 (pp. 50-52).
25 This is sometimes called ‘‘unemployment within employment.” See “A measuring stick for un­
employment,” by Morris L. Cooke in American Association for Labor Legislation Review, June 1, 1921,
p. 170:




Table 7.—AVERAGE HOURS WORKED AND AVERAGE EARNINGS MADE IN THE LEATHER INDUSTRY IN 1919, BY SEX AND OCCUPATION OF
EMPLOYEES, AND PAY-ROLL PERIODS

Sex and occupation of employees.

Number Number
of estab­ of em­
lish­
ments. ployees.

In
biweekly
Per
In
weekly or semi­ week
pay period. monthly day.
pay period.

Full-time
hours
per
Per
week.
week.

Per cent
of full
time
worked.

In
biweekly Per
In
weekly or semi­ hour.
pay period. monthly
pay period.

Per
week.

MALES.

H eavy u p p e r leath er.

Beam hands.........................................................
Buffers...................................................................
Finishers...............................................................
Fleshers and unhairers.......................................
Glazers...................................................................
Laborers, all departments..................................
Putters-out, hand................................................
Putters-out, machine..........................................
Seasoners...............................................................
Shavers.................................................................
Sorters and measurers.........................................
Splitters................................................................
Stakers, tackers and stretchers, hand..............
Stakers, machine..................................................

15
10
10
14
11
15
7
9
15
15
9
14
14
14

107
129
201
160
105
1,439
80
49
294
192
105
131
320
150

5 1 .5
4 5 .5
5 1 .6
4 6 .0
3 3 .4
5 1 .0
4 3 .6
4 6 .4
4 9 .2
4 7 .5
5 0 .1
4 8 .1
4 8 .9
4 3 .6

10
11
12
9
6
10
9
11
8

124
289
766
110
59
59
101
189
75

117 .8
112 .2
135 .3
118 .7
1 08 .0
117 .2
111 .5
1 19 .2
1 08 .0
110.1
115 .8
112 .6
100 .7
111.4

4 5 .2
4 7 .2
47 . 3
45 . 5
4 4 .1
4 0 .4
3 9 .5
4 5 .9
4 8 .4

$ 2 7 .6 4

8 .6
8 .3
8 .6
8 .0
6. 5
8 .7
7 .9
8 .4
8 .2
8 .1
8 .4
8 .3
8 .0
7 .6

5 1 .6
4 9 .8
5 1 .6
4 8 .0
3 9 .0
5 2 .2
47 . 4
5 0 .4
4 9 .2
4 8 .6
5 0 .4
4 9 .8
4 8 .0
4 5 .6

5 4 .0
5 8 .0
5 4 .4
5 2 .9
5 3 .7
5 5 .7
5 5 .2
5 6 .2
5 4 .4
5 5 .3
5 0 .6
5 6 .3
5 5 .6
5 4 .0

96
86
95
91
73
94
86
90
90
88
100
88
86
84

7 .6
7 .9
7 .9
7 .6
7 .2
6 .7
6 .6
7 .6
8 .1

4 5 .2
4 7 .2
4 7 .3
4 5 .5
4 4 .1
4 0 .4
39 . 5
4 5 .9
4 8 .4

4 9 .2
5 0 .5
4 9 .1
4 9 .4
5 1 .1
4 9 .4
5 0 .9
4 9 .8
4 9 .4

92
93
96
92
86
82
78
92
98

8 .0
8 .1
7 .6

4 8 .0
4 8 .6
4 5 .6

5 3 .5
5 2 .5
5 2 .6

90
93
87

20 . 88
2 8 .6 8
2 6 .0 1

$ 58.29
58 . 23

2 5 .7 8
36 . 85
24 . 99
20 . 41
22 . 28
26 . 35
26 . 20
29 . 84
29 . 21

2 7 .4 3
2 7 .2 0
2 6 .4 9
18 . 32
24 . 00
27 . 96
21 . 30
24 . 21
33 . 34
2 3 .3 9
24 . 56
25 . 92
24 . 59

7 2 .2 9
60 . 25
47 . 31
48 . 82
54 . 75
48 . 58
54 . 45
56 . 52
48 . 58
6 1 .1 5
52 . 01
63 . 55

$ 0 . 532
.5 3 8
.5 8 4
. 569
.5 5 2
.451
.5 7 9
.4 3 8
.5 0 2
.6 3 7
.4 5 8
.5 2 8
.5 1 6
.5 7 0

$ 27 . 43
27 . 04
2 9 .1 0
26 . 78
19.43
22 . 70
26 . 61
21 . 82
24 . 36
3 0 .59
2 2 .9 6
2 6 .3 6
2 4 .8 6
2 6 .0 3

L igh t u p p e r leath er.
q pnr]

Yjnliq.irp.rK
Glazars
Tfl^nyfirs nil r|ppqrf'mpntK
fAPQ.nnt. mnnhinp
Spas^n fvrp
Shq.yp.rs
ptakars h an d
Stakers, m ach ine
T rim m ers

..........................

-

..
....................

Sole leather.

10 2 .6
54
4 9 .1
17
Bark grinders.......................................................
1 04 .4
23
166
4 9 .4
Beam hands.........................................................
9 9 .6
23
123
4 4 .7
Fleshers and unhairers.......................................
1Monthly Labor Review, U. S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, May, 1920, pp. 103, 104.




.561
.7 3 8
.5 2 6
.4 4 4
.533
.6 4 8
.6 5 8
.6 5 5

.599

3 8 .0 4
51 . 05
4 6 .4 8

2 5 .7 8
36 . 85
2 4 .9 9
20 . 41
22 . 28
26 . 35
2 6 .2 0
2 9 .8 4
29.21

.4 0 3
.5 1 7
.523

19.20
24.91
2 3 .4 4

PARTIAL UNEMPLOYMENT ---- CHARACTER AND EXTENT.

Average earnings actually made—

Average hours actually worked—

to
0\

Table 7.—AVERAGE HOURS WORKED AND AVERAGE EARNINGS MADE IN THE LEATHER INDUSTRY IN 1919, BY SEX AND OCCUPATION OF
EMPLOYEES, AND PAY-ROLL PERIOD—Concluded.
Average earnings actually made—

Average hours actually worked—
Sex and occupation of employees.

In
Per
biweekly
In
weekly or semi­ week
monthly day.
pay period.
pay period.

Per cent
of full
time
worked.

In
In
biweekly
Per
weekly or semi­ hour.
pay period. monthly
pay period.

Per
week.

s—concluded.

S o le leath er— Concluded.

Laborers all departments..................................
Liquor runners.....................................................
Operators, rrVnirig-TTmphiriP................................
Setters-out............................................................
Total...........................................................
FEM ALES.

H eavy u p p e r leath er.

Giazers...................................................................
Laborers, all departments..................................
SA & fwnfirs........................................................................................

L ig h t u p p e r leath er.
Trrvnora
T 0Rnrorc oil Hn'nortTiiCi'ntQ
Pnftoro-Anf
Coo onn ore

m a /V H in o

-




47.4
55.2
47.4
52.. 8
48.6

52.3
53.7
52.3
53.0
53.0

91
103
91
100
92

24.97
25.96
30.84
25.59
26.03

44.96
56.71
51.62
47.21
49.49

.482
.480
. 560
. 456
.518

22.49
26.16
26.30
23.96
24.72

7.6
7.5
7.6

45.6
45.0
45.6

59.1
57.9
57.2

77
78
80

17.33
12.27
18.35

29.93
27.06
31.42

0.312
.270
. 354

14.25
12.42
16.21

6.0
6.7
7.4
5.6
6.6

35.8
40.5
44.6
33.4
40.2

51.0
49.1
48.6
48.9
49.5

70
82
92
68
81

15.40
12.58
13.47
10.54
11.99

.422
.314
.300
.313
.291

15.40
12.58
13.47
10.54
11.99

7.6
6.9

45.6
41.4

48.0
52.1

95
79

17.22
13.40

.375
.318

17.38
13.43

1,986
50
273
84
7,970

3
7
6

64
167
81

46.3
43.5
47.6

6
6
10
4
7

114
42
148
69
243

35.8
40.5
44.6
33.4
40.2

4
23

61
989

46.3
40.8

S o le leath er.

Laborers, all departments..................................
Total........................................... ..............

7.9
101.3
9.2
127.5
7.9
100.7
< 8.8
116.3
8.1
107.6 _______
.................... •.......... ... .........
47.0
52.5
49.0
52.2
47.3

24
21
23
17
51

98.2
99.7
95.1

95.1
98.1

36.58
29.17

INDUSTRIAL UNEMPLOYMENT,

m ale

Number Number
of estab­ of em­
lish­
ments. ployees.

Full-time
hours
per
Per
week.
week.

PARTIAL UNEM PLO YM EN T---- CHARACTER AND EXTENT.

27

Similar detailed data were secured for occupations in 23 other
industries. Table 8 presents a summary of the percentages of partial
unemployment found in the entire group of industries.
T a bl e 8 .—

AVERAGE PERCENTAGE OF FULL TIME WORKED PER WEEK, BY 306,690
EMPLOYEES IN 1933 ESTABLISHMENTS IN 24 INDUSTRIES, 1919.
Industry.

Number Number Full-time Average Per cent of Per cent of
hours
of estab­
hours
actually full time full time
of
lish­
worked
lost.
ments. employees. per week. per week. worked.

Male employees.
Automobiles..................................
Cars.................................................
Electrical apparatus.....................
Machinery, tools...........................
Typewriters...................................
Foundry.......................................
Iron ana steel................................
Brick and tile................................
Pottery..........................................
Glass................................................
Chemicals.......................................
Leather..........................................
Rubber.........................................
Furniture.......................................
Lumber..........................................
Millwork.........................................
Paper and pulp............................
Paper boxes...................................
Confectionery................................
Men’s clothing..............................
Women’s clothing........................
Silk..................................................
Hosiery and underwear...............
Overalls..........................................
Total........................................

32
22
38
29
28
150
1147
35
15
68
163
51
23
111
141
105
85
77
101
134
158
33
51
119
1,916

17,827
14,685
4,368
7,681
8,880
15,347
34,067
1,803
2,142
11,506
28,283
7,970
14,613
10,556
18,022
5,154
6,366
1,802
4,534
9,327
3,150
3,442
1,738
365
233,628

50.6
53.8
50.6
53.9
52.6
53.8
2 131.7
55.1
53.6
53.7
56.8
53.0
51.1
55.2
59.1
52.7
51.4
51.2
54.4
47.8
48.5
51.7
52.6
46.1

49.2
48.6
48.0
51.6
51.6
49.2
299.9
46.8
42.6
46.8
50.4
48.6
49.2
51.0
43.2
48.6
51.8
49.9
50.4
44.9
48.5
48.2
48.1
42.6

97.2
90.3
94.9
95.8
98.1
91.4
75.9
85.0
79.5
87.0
89.0
92.0
96.0
92.4
73.1
92.0
100.4
97.0
93.0
93.9
100.0
93.2
91.4
92.0
88.8

2.8
9.7
5.1
4.2
1.9
8.6
24.1
15.0
20.5
13.0
11.0
8.0
4.0
7.6
26.9
8.0
3.4
3.0
7.0
6.1
6.8
8.6
8.0
11.2

94.9
92.0
89.5
90.7
84.5
71.0
80.2
83.0
84.0
79.0
90.0
88.5
88.8
91.9
90.0
87.0
91.3
91.0
91.5
87.7
87.0
88.7

5.1
8.0
10.5
9.3
15.5
29.0
19.8
17.0
16.0
21.0
10.10
11.5
11.2
8.1
10.0
13.0
8.7
9.0
8.5
12.3
13.0
11.3

Female employees.
Automobiles..................................
Electrical apparatus.....................
Machinery, tools...........................
Typewriters...................................
Foundry.........................................
Iron ana steel................................
Pottery...........................................
Glass...............................................
Chemicals.......................................
Leather..........................................
Rubber...........................................
Furniture.......................................
Millwork.........................................
Paper and pulp.............................
Paper boxes...................................
Confectionery................................
Men’s clothing..............................
Women’s clothing.........................
Silk..................................................
Hosiery and underwear...............
Total........................................

21
30
8
25
13
i6
15
47
29
23
22
60
12
64
77
101
134
157
33
51
129
1,051

623
1,618
154
3,498
83
290
1,115
1,857
699
989
3,376
915
225
1,964
4,311
12,152
9,262
6,772
4,277
12,336
6,546
73,062

49.3
50.2
51.6
51.6
50.4
2102.2
50.9
51.9
52.6
52.1
51.9
54.9
54.7
51.7
50.0
50.1
48.0
48.1
51.7
52.1
46.0

46.8
46.2
46.2
46.8
42.6
2 72.6
40.8
43.2
44.4
41.4
46.8
48.6
48.6
48.0
45.0
43.8
43.8
44.0
47.3
45.7
40.2

1 Each department (reported) of a plant is counted as an establishment.
2 In one-half month.
3 Overtime.

In these 24 industries, we find 233,628 male employees who were
idle on an average of 11.2 per cent of the full-time hours per week,
and 73,062 female employees who were not working an average of



28

INDUSTRIAL U N EM PLO YM EN T.

11.3 per cent of the full-time hours per week; or a total of 306,690
employees who were idle an average of 11.2 per cent of their working
time.
Hours
idle per
Number. 100 hours.

Male employees............................................................................
233,628 11.2
Female employees............................................................................ 73,062 11.3
Total............................................................................................... 306,690 11.2

How far these figures apply to industry as a whole depends upon
judgment on several distinct points: (1) Is the number of employees
covered sufficient to be fairly representative of all manufacturing
industry ? (2) How typical of industry in general are the industries
for which data are given in respect to the months of the year covered ?
(3) How typical of average industrial conditions is the period for
which most of the data are given ?
The following considerations regarding the industrial survey data,
the most important of thje four groups of figures showing time lost
on account of waiting amcf other causes, are submitted:
(1) The number of employees (306,690) is 3.4 per cent of the total
number of vrage earners employed in manufactures in the United
States in 1919 (9,000,000); this is a substantial sample and is regarded
as sufficient to be representative if otherwise satisfactory.
(2) The months of the year, February to May, in which the major­
ity of the pay-roll schedules were taken are those in which normally
there occurs one of the two peaks which come in the manufacturing
year. For industry as a wnole, factories are busier during these
months than in July and August or December and January. (See
Charts 8 and 9, pp. 36 and 38-39, for typical curves of months.) For
this reason the demand for labor is better from February to May and
slackness of work within the factory is likely to be less than the
average, especially in such industries as the women’s clothing and
the paper-box industries.
(3) While the first half of 1919, as shown by the curve for the
United States as a whole in Chart 6 (p. 17), contained a period of
considerably reduced production, the movement in some of the indus­
tries here represented was not very pronounced, and it was followed
by a rise In production, which occurred in many of the industries,
during May and June and reached a peak in the early part of 1920.
The conclusion has been reached, therefore, that as a whole the early
months of 1919, even though showing a lower production than the
peaks of 1918 or 1920, represent a labor demand somewhere near
normal in a considerable number but not all of the industries here
covered, and that there is little reason to believe that the amount of
partial unemployment, on the whole, was much greater than usual.
This is borne out by the similar percentages found in the Connecticut
investigation for a pre-war year, 1912, (see p. 30), and in the survey
in the boot and shoe industry in the spring of 1920, and the slaugh­
tering and meat packing industry in April, 1921, (see p. 30). The
last two investigations, made during the postwar boom period, when
the demand for production was greatest, showed 9 per cent of par­
tial unemployment (the actual hours employed being 91 per cent
of the full-time hours per week).



PARTIAL UNEM PLO YM EN T— CHARACTER AND EXTENT.

29

(4) Some of the industries covered show a ratio of hours actually
worked to full-time hours which is undoubtedly higher than normal,
either for seasonal reasons or because of the speeding up due to the
war which in many lines was not appreciably relaxed until 1920.
Paper-box factories are particularly spasmodic in operation, and in
the women’s clothing, confectionery, and overalls industries the num­
ber of hours worked is possibly higher than normal; that is, the
amount of time lost from unemployment while on the iob would prob­
ably be higher in normal years than that recorded in this table. This
may be true also of the rubber and the paper and pulp industries.
(5) On the other hand, it must be remembered that this lost time
includes more than hours waiting; that is, it probably includes “days
off,” the occasional days or half days during which employees are
voluntarily absent, and some time lost from minor illnesses and
accidents. What proportion these constitute of the whole it is
impossible to determine at this time. Time lost from absences is
doubtless equalled by time lost from part-time operation of plants,
and there is reason to believe that “hours waiting” constitute a
large share of the time lost from partial unemployment. It should
also be remembered that in some industries, particularly iron and
steel* the method of collecting the data was such as not to take
account of work done by an employee in an occupation other than
his regular line of employment. This might reduce somewhat the
percentage of difference between full-time hours and hours actually
worked per week. The great bulk of the work in most industries,
however, is done in the regular occupations of employees.
Taken in conjunction with data from the two sources mentioned
above and bearing in mind that account must be taken of part-time
employment in such depressional years as 1920 and 1921, the con­
clusion is that the percentage of partial unemployment found, while
possibly too high in certain industries and too low in others, is not
necessarily much above normal. Certainly, it is based on the most
comprehensive single body of data available regarding time lost
from all forms of partial unemployment in a considerable section of
industry.
S U R V E Y O F T H E B O O T A N D S H O E IN D U S T R Y (1920) A N D T H E S L A U G H T E R ­
IN G A N D M E A T P A C K IN G IN D U S T R Y (1921) B Y T H E U N IT E D S T A T E S
B U R E A U O F L A B O R S T A T IS T IC S .

An investigation of the boot and shoe industry made early in
1920 27 along similar lines showed nearly the same percentage of
unemployment, although made at the peak of the postwar boom
when every sort of unemployment might be expected to be at a
minimum. And in a more recent survey of a similar character made
by the bureau, that of the slaughtering and meat packing industry
in April, 1921, the percentage of lost time was about the same.
Table 9 summarizes the results found in these two industries.
27 Of the 117 schedules secured, 18 were for a pay-roll period terminating in March, 83 in April, 14 in May,
and 1 each in January and February, 1920.




30

INDUSTRIAL UNEM PLO YM EN T.

Tabls 9.—AVERAGE PER CENT OF FULL TIME WORKED PER WEEK BY EMPLOYEES
IN THE BOOT AND SHOE INDUSTRY, IN THE SPRING OF 1920,i AND IN THE SLAUGH­
TERING AND MEAT PACKING INDUSTRY, APRIL, 1921.*
Number Number Full-time Average P ot cent Per cent
of
of estab­ of em­ hours per actual
of full
hours
Industry, and sex of employees.
lish­
worked full time
ments. ployees. week. per week. worked. time lost.
BOOTS AND SHOES.

92
89
91

8
11
9

34 28,969 348.4
44.4
92
Males...............................................................
34
42.6
3,248 8 48.3
88
Females.........................................................
A ll employees.......................................
34 32,217 8 48.4
44.3
91
1 Monthly Labor Review of the U. S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, August, 1920, pp. 77, 78.
* Idem, September, 1921, p. 95.
* Average basic or regular hours of operation per week.

8
12
9

Males................................................................
Females.........................................................
All employees... *................................
SLAUGHTERING AND MEAT PACKING.

117
117
117

15,427
5,841
21,268

48.4
48.8

44.4
43.2

REPORT OF CONNECTICUT COMMISSION ON CONDITIONS OF WAGE­
EARNING WOMEN AND MINORS, 1912.

The Connecticut Commission on the Conditions of Wage-Earning
Women and Minors found in the textile and metal industries of that
State in 1912 a somewhat higher percentage of loss of time and earn­
ings, due possibly to the higher proportion of female employees, as
is shown by Table 10:
T able 10.—PER CENT OF FULL-TIME HOURS AND EARNINGS LOST PER WEEK BY
5,243 EMPLOYEES IN THE COTTON, SILK, AND METAL-WORKING INDUSTRIES OF
CONNECTICUT, 1912.1
Average
Number hours Full-time Per cent
Industry, and sex of employees. of em­ actually hours of full­
per
ployees. worked week. time
lost.
per week.

Average
actual
weekly
earnings.

Com­ Per cent
puted of full­
full-time time
weekly earnings,
earnings. lost.

Cotton:
582
54
58
0.07
$9.91 $10.63
0.07
Males......................................
942
58
.12
51
9.17
.12
Females..................................
8.05
58
.14
6.26
50
7.40
.15
Silk: Females.............................. 1,175
.12
8 58
51
6.50
7.41
.12
Metal trades: Females................ 2,544
.12
Total...................................
5,243
.12
1 Report of the Connecticut Commission to Investigate the Conditions of Wage-Earning Women and
Minors. Hartford, 1913.
* A number of the factories were running on a 54-hour week schedule.

SUMMARY OF PARTIAL-UNEMPLOYMENT DATA.

The data from these four investigations regarding ‘‘unemployment
within employment/7 are summarized in Table 11.

Table 11.—COMPARISON OF PARTIAL UNEMPLOYMENT IN INDUSTRIAL OCCUPA­
TIONS AS SHOWN BY FOUR INVESTIGATIONS.
Investigation.

Date.

Industrial surveys! the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics.. Spring, 1919
Survey of boot and shoe industry by United States Bureau of Spring, 1920
Labor Statistics. Survey of slaughtering and meat-packing industry by United April, 1921
States Bureau of Labor Statistics.
1912
Connecticut Commission on the Conditions of Wage-earning
Women and Minors.
Total...............................................................................................




Pei: cent
Number of of partial
persons unemploy­
covered.
ment.
306,690
21,268
32,217
5,243

11
9
9
12

365,418

About 10

PARTIAL UNEM PLOYM ENT---- CHARACTER AND EXTENT.

31

Data secured by the engineers connected with the survey of waste
made in 1921 under the direction of the Federated American Engi­
neering Societies and published in the report on Waste in Industry
indicate that among representative concerns covered in the building
trades, textiles, boots and shoes, metal-working establishments,
men’s clothing, and other industries, the amount of time lost by wage
earners from partial unemployment is in a large number of instances
much greater than 10 per cent, although the figures were not intended
to be statistically conclusive nor should they be so regarded. Taken
in connection with the industries covered in the four investigations
the results of which have just been presented (the industrial survey
of the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the boot and shoe inquiry of 1920,
the 1921 survey of the slaughtering and meat-packing industry, and
the report of the Connecticut commission) they tend to confirm the
percentage arrived at (10 per cent).
This 10 per cent is what is lost from unemployment while on the
pay roll. During depressions when plants are running only a few
days a week or a few hours per day, partial unemployment due to
part-time employment rises to a high percentage; in many instances
during 1921 as much as 40 to 60 per cent of the normal full-time
hours were lost. This tends to raise the average of 10 per cent to a
considerably higher figure, but in the absence of definite data 10 per
cent is adhered to as being conservative. If the figures for the
industries covered are typical of industry in general, partial unem­
ployment is responsible for a loss of working time of the average wage
earner, amounting, on the basis of 300 working days, to 30 days per
annum.
Unemployment proper, that is, total separation from the pay roll,
which has been shown to be responsible for 30 days of lost time per
wage earner per year, and partial unemployment (hours waiting or
part-time w o t k though on the pay roll), which causes another 30 days
of lost time per wage earner per year, appear together to account for
60 working days,27 or 10 weeks, of involuntary idleness each year. To
what extent time lost from sickness, accidents, and strikes is included
is not known.
UNEMPLOYMENT DUE TO SICKNESS AND LABOR DISPUTES.

SICKNESS.

Disability due to sickness or accidents and strikes or lockouts
cause additional loss of time, which, although not constituting
involuntary unemployment in the same sense as that previously
discussed, should be taken into account in any comprehensive
estimate of the factors in unemployment.
The time lost from sickness and other disability, according to State
reports of the unemployment of organized wage earners, has averaged
about 1.25 per cent in New York (1904-1916) and 1.4 per cent in
Massachusetts (1908-1921), running about 4 days per union work­
man per year. It appears from more extensive investigations2
27 The following quotation from the report on Waste in Industry by the Federated American Engineering
Societies indicates a much higher percentage in some important industries:
“ The clothing worker is idle about 31 per cent of the year; the average shoe worker spends only 65 per
cent of his time at work; the building-trades workman is employed only about 190 days in the year or
approximately 63 per cent of his time. During the past 30 years bituminous coal miners were idle an
average of 93 possible working days per year.”—Waste in Industry, 1921, p. 16.




32

INDUSTRIAL UNEM PLO YM EN T.

covering many classes of workers that the percentage for all industrial
wage earners is somewhat higher, amounting to about seven days
for sickness and other disabilities.
Table 12 summarizes the more important investigations in this
field.
T a bl e 1 2 . —

SICKNESS AS A CAUSE

UNEMPLOYMENT.

OF

Investigation.

Date.

Report on Conditions of Employment in the Iron and Steel
Industry1.................. .............. .....................................................
Ohio Health and Old Age Insurance Commission3.......................
Metropolitan Life Insurance Co.4.......................... .........................
A study of industrial absenteeism6..................................................
Dallas Wage Commission6.................................................................
Disability experience of Workmen’s Sick and Death Benefit
Fund of the United States of America, 1912-19167.....................
Average sick leave, clerks in U. S. Bureau of Labor Statistics 8. .
Statistics of 415 American establishment sickness funds, aver­
aged by California Social Insurance Commission 9....................
Pennsylvania Health Insurance Commission10..............................
Average......................................................................................

1913
1912-1917
1915-1917
1919-1921
1917
1912-1916
1920
1917
1919

Number
included.
170,000
663,163
376,573
6,700
185,018
302,584
104,063
Over 1,500,000

Annual loss
in working
days per
year.
*9
6 to 9
6.9
6.86
6.8
6.6
6.3
6.0
6.0
11About 7.0

1 Report on Conditions of Employment in the Iron and Steel Industry in the United States, S. Doc.
No. 110, 62d Cong., 1st sess., vol. 3, p. 22.
2 Not including accidents.
3 Ohio Health and Old Age Insurance Commission: Health, Health Insurance, Old-Age Pensions,
February, 1919, pp. 2,79,80 (covers sickness and nonindustrial accidents causing disability of 8 days or more).
4 Metropolitan Life Insurance Co.: Some recent morbidity data, compiled by Margaret Loomis Stecker,
1919. A summary of seven community sickness surveys made among policynolders of the Metropolitan
Life Insurance Co., 1915-1917, by Lee K. Frankel and Louis I. Dublin, p. 23. (The figures here given
relate to white persons 15 years of age and over.)
5“ A study of the records of a large rubber company, covering 28 months from Jan. 1,1919, to Apr. 30,
1921,” paper read before American Association of Industrial Physicians and Surgeons, Boston, June 6,
1921, by Robert S. Quinby, M. D. Of this amount, 6.61 days were lost on account of sickness and 0.025
day from nonindustrial accidents, besides 0.45 day lost from industrial accidents.
6 Report of Survey Committee to the Dallas Wage Commission, April 25,1917, p. 5.
7 “ Disability among wage earners,” by Boris Emmet in Monthly Labor Review, U. S. Bureau of Labor
Statistics, Nov. 1919, p. 25. Referred to in Ohio Health and Old Age Insurance Commission report, Feb1919, p. 95.
8 Special study of employees of Bureau of Labor Statistics, 1920. See Bui. 304 of the U. S. Bureau of
Labor Statistics, pp. 174, 175.
« Report of the Social Insurance Commission of the State of California, Jan., 1917, pp. 33, 313.
10 Report of the Health Insurance Commission of Pennsylvania, Jan., 1919, pp. 3, 31, 53.
11 The estimate of the U. S. Commission on Industrial Relations (1915) of 9 days per wage earner lost on
account of sickness, purporting to cover about a million persons, although presumably well based, has not
been used here on account of inability to judge of the character of the supporting data.

LABOR DISPUTES.

Labor disputes caused an average loss in Massachusetts (19081921) of less than 1 per cent (0.81) of the total number of working
days, and in New York (1904-14) of less than 2 per cent (1.86), an
average of between two and a half and five days per union worker
per year.28 The proportion of time lost per employee from strikes
by other than union employees is probably less than the union
average; on the other hand, the fact that three-fourths of the entire
number of strikes as recorded by the United States Commissioner
of Labor for the 25 years between 1881 and 1905,29 and presumably
a somewhat similar proportion since, were ordered by labor unions,
means that the union labor average of time lost from strikes applies
in the great majority of cases of strikes.
28 Bulletin 69 of the New York State Department of Labor, p. 5; Massachusetts annual reports on the
statistics of labor, 1908-1919; quarterly reports on employment, Massachusetts, 1919; Massachusetts
Industrial Review, 1920 and 1921.
29 Twenty-first Annual Report of U. S. Commissioner of Labor, 1906, p. 42.




SEASONAL UNEM PLO YM EN T.

33

Table 13 shows the percentage of idleness dhe to labor disputes in
New York for each month, 1904 to 1914.
PER CENT OF IDLENESS IN REPRESENTATIVE UNIONS OF NEW YORK A T
THE END OF EACH MONTH, 1904 TO 1914, DUE TO LABOR DlSPUTES.i

T able 1 3 .—

Year.
1904...........................
1905...........................
1906...........................
1907...........................
1908...........................
1909...........................
1910...........................
1911...........................
1912...........................
1913...........................
1914...........................

Jan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May. June. July. Aug. Sept. Oct. Nov. Dec. Mean.
2.5 1.5 6.6
3.1 2.9 3.4
1.8 1.6 1.4
.7 1.0 1.4
.4 .3 .3
1.4 .5 .5
6.4 5.5 3.9
.6 .6 .5
.2 .2 .1
19.8 19.1 .1
.1 .2 .7

3.1 3.9
2.4 1.4
1.1 1.8
.4 1.5
.3 .2
3.7 3.0
2.0 1.4
.3 1.8
.2 .6
.5 .4
.1 .2

1.7 5.1 5.0 4.8 3.3 2.8 2.9
1.3 .6 .7 .5 .7 .8 .8
2.0 1.9 .8 .8 1.2 1.1 .7
.7 1.9 3.1 1.4 1.0 .6 .6
.2 .2 1.1 .3 .4 .1 .8
2.9 2.6 2.5 2.3 2.8 2.6 1.6
2.3 10.1 13.7 3.1 .5 1.4 .6
3.8 1.4 1.1 1.2 .5 1.2 1.1
.5 1.1 1.7 .1 .2 .1 5.8
.4 .1 .3 .1 .1 .8 .1
.2 .1 .1 .1 .1 .8 .9

3.6
1.6
' 1.4
1.2
.4
2.2
4.2
1.2
.9
3.5
.3

1Bulletin 69 of the New York State Department of Labor, p. 5.

From records kept by the Bureau of Mediation and Arbitration in
the State of New York, covering all workers, nonunion as well as
union, in manufactures and certain other industries, it appears that
for the years 1910-1920, the total number of days lost from labor dis­
putes averaged 0.81 per cent of the total working days, or about
days per year. There is some reason to believe that not all strikes
have been recorded every year,30 and that this percentage is too low
for New York State. It represents about half the number of days
lost from labor disputes per employee as shown by the union unem­
ployment figures in Table 13. On the other hand, the frequency and
severity of strikes in the clothing and building trades in the State of
New York would lead to the belief that the average days lost from
labor disputes in this State is somewhat higher than for other States
which have a smaller proportion of garment workers and in which
there is more stability in the construction industries. For these
reasons the number of days lost from labor disputes per employee
or the country as a whole is believed to be between two and three a
year.
SEASONAL UNEMPLOYMENT.

MONTHLY FLUCTUATIONS IN NUMBER OF FACTORY EMPLOYEES.

A considerable proportion of unemployment is due to seasonal
fluctuations in the labor market and to business depressions which
at times sharply lower the entire level of demand for labor.
Both seasonal and depressional factors are evident in Chart 4,
showing the involuntary idleness of organized wage earners in Massa­
chusetts, not including unemployment due to sickness and labor
disputes. Examination of data showing the total number of factory
workers in all the industries of the United States throws some light
on the character of the movements which take place and the extent
of the variations, from one month or year to another.
Chart 7 shows graphically for the manufacturing industries of the
United States the fluctuations in factory employment by months in
each of three census years, 1904, 1909, and 1914. Allowance must
be made for the general inclination or dip in each case, which accounts
w Compare statement by Prof. C. W, Doten, in Waste in Industry, 1921, p. 312,




34

INDUSTRIAL U NEM PLO YM EN T.

for the downward movement of the 1914 curve, as business became
worse during that year of depression, and the sharply upward slope
of the 1909 curve, indicating the rapid increase in the total number
of employees after the panic year of 1908. The sharp dip in the
middle of the 1904 curve was due partly to strikes in the steel and
FLUCTUATIONS IN THE TOTAL NUMBER OF WAGE EARNERS IN THE MANU­
FACTURING INDUSTRIES OF THE UNITED STATES, 1904, 1909, AND 1914.
Index No.
[100=month of highest employment.]
Ch ar t 7.—

textile industries which reduced temporarily the total number
employed at that time and partly to the slackening of business in
midsummer. When the general factors in all three curves were taken
into consideration, the seasonal movement becomes plain—two peaks
of employment, in the spring and in the fall, with a low point in July
and another in January.



35

SEASONAL UNEM PLO YM EN T.

Table 14 gives the figures by months for all wage earners in manu­
facturing, according to the United States Census of Manufactures
for 1904, 1909, and 1914, on which Chart 7 is based. The 1919 figures
have not been used, since they lack significance in this connection;
the general trend is sharply upward, the movement being primarily
cyclical.
T able 1 4 .—

MONTHLY FLUCTUATIONS OF WAGE EARNERS IN MANUFACTURING
INDUSTRIES IN THE UNITED STATES, 1904, 1909, AND 1914.1
Month.

January.....................................................................
February...................................................................
March.........................................................................
April...........................................................................
May............................................................................
June............................................................................
July.............................................................................
August......................................................................
September.................................................................
October.....................................................................
November..................................................................
December...................................................................

Per cent of maximum
for year.

Number.3
1904

1909

1914

5,262,472
5,330,471
5,450,736
5,493,343
5,512,373
5,463,804
5,323,966
5,420,618
5,608,412
5,676,920
5,587,028
5,490,453

6,210,063
6,297,627
6,423,517
6,437,633
6,457,279
6,517,469
6,486,676
6,656,933
6,898,765
6,997,090
7,006,853
6,990,652

7,075,682
7,141,594
7,242,752
7,217,320
7,148,650
7,100,368
7,018,867
7,020,683
7,086,815
7,006,331
6,736,698
6,640,284

1904 1909 1914
92.7
93.9
96.0
96.8
97.1
96.2
93.8
95.5
98.8
100.0
98.4
96.7

88.6
89.9
91.7
91.9
92.2
93.0
92.6
95.0
98.5
99.9
100.0
99.8

97.7
9a 6
100.0
99.6
9a 7
98.0
96.9
96.9
97.8
96.7
93.0
91.7

1 Abstract of the Census of Manufactures, 1914, p. 436.
* The figures for 1909 and 1914 represent tne number employed on the 15th of each month, or the nearest
representative day; those for 1904, the average number employed during the month.

The seasonal movement may be seen clearly in the data for those
industrial States where records are available for a continuous number
of years showing the fluctuations by months of the number of manu­
facturing employees, as in New Jersey, shown graphically*in Chart 8.
It is interesting to notice how uniformly the number of factory
employees reaches a low point in midsummer, and rises to a peak in
October and again in March. The number employed each October
is naturally a little higher than in March, due to the gradual increase
in population and business. The exceptional curves are found in
the years of depression, 1907-8 and 1914, and in the year 1915 when
the total number of employees rose sharply in response to the war
demand. This rise continued during 1916, 1917, and the first hah
of 1918, although not shown on this chart.
In Massachusetts the yearly curves of employment show a similar
movement.
CAUSES OF SEASONAL FLUCTUATIONS.

Considered more in detail, seasonal fluctuations in employment
may be divided as follows:
1. Those caused by conditions limiting production:
(а) Perishable character of raw materials, as in the canning of
fruits and vegetables, harvesting of grain, etc.
(б ) Weather (winter and summer seasons, and heat and cold)
interfering with or preventing manufacturing or construction opera­
tions.
(c) Size of plant, intelligence of management, financial resources,
degree of specialization, storage capacity—all these internal factors
affect the capacity of the manufacturing plant to continue operation
and to keep its employees busy during periods of temporary slackness.



36

INDUSTRIAL U N EM PLO YM EN T.

8.—FLUCTUATIONS IN NUMBER OF FACTORY WORKERS EMPLOYED IN NEW
JERSEY, BY MONTHS, 1902 TO 1915.
Employees.

Char t




SEASONAL UNEM PLO YM EN T.

37

2. Those caused by conditions of demand or consumption:
(a) Changes in style, frequently connected with the seasons or
weather.
(b) Other time elements in the buying habits of people—holidays,
Christmas shopping, Easter, etc.
(c) Character of goods—luxuries or necessities, novelties or style
goods, etc.; constant versus occasional or spasmodic demand.
TYPICAL SEASONAL INDUSTRIES.

A number of these types of seasonal employment are shown in
Chart 9 giving the number of employees by months for certain indus­
tries from data of the Census of Manufactures for 1914.
The first of the industries charted, canning and preserving fruits
and vegetables, illustrates an industry with a sharp autumn harvest
peak, due to the perishable character of its raw materials.
The brick and tile industry (including terra cotta and fire-clay
products) has a summer peak, both because demand for its products
is highest during the summer, and because during the winter months
production is possible only to a limited extent. The women’s
clothing industry illustrates the two-peak (spring and fall) industry.
Farm machinery (agricultural implements) and fertilizers have a
winter or early-spring peak; fertilizer is bought mainly in the spring,
and production in both industries is maimy for spring shipment,
although some fertilizer and some farm machinery are purchased
to be used on land in the fall.
The majority of industries fall into one of these classes, either
that with a winter peak, a summer peak, a harvest peak, or spring
and fall peaks; but there are endless minor variations and modifica­
tions, depending on the character of the industry and its particular
market.
Chart 10 shows the unemployment curves 31 in four of the leading
industries in New York State.32 This chart indicates strikingly the
high percentage of unemployment in the clothing and building trades
in New York State.
The single winter peak each year in the building industry and the
two peaks annually in the clothing industry are distinct from the
wavelike (rather than the seasonal) curves of the metal trades, and
the comparatively even line of the printing trades.33 The winters of
low unemployment in the building trades, those of 1905-6 and 191213, prove upon examination of the records of the weather bureau
to have been unusually mild and open, permitting work during
much of the cold season.
Chart 11 shows in comparative form the unemployment curve by
months in the woodworking trades in New York State34 for the years
1909 to 1915.
81It has not been possible to eliminate unemployment due to sickness and strikes;the curves, therefore,
represent unemployment due to all causes.
33 Chart 10 is reproduced from special Bulletin 85 of the New York Department of Labor, July, 1917.
33 These curves include unemployment due to sickness and strikes but the percentage due to these
causes is small, increasing the height of the curve on the average only about 3 per cent.
84Data from Special Bulletin 85 of the New York State Department of Labor, July, 1917.




INDUSTRIAL U N EM PLO YM EN T.

T 9.— M

usand

lo e
ye s*

rHLY FLUCTUATIONS IN THE NUMBER OF EMPLOYEES IN SPECIFI]
INDUSTRIES IN THE UNITED STATES, 1909 AND 1914.
Apr

May

June July

Aug Sept

A pr

Feb. M ar

May

June July

A u g Sept

Oct Nov

lo O

150
140
1 30
120

110
100
90
80

70
60
50
40
30

20
10

0
Feb

M ar

Oct

Nov.

140'
130
120

110
100
90
60
70
60
50
40

'

~1fP

iQAQ
raft?c

30

/

/

/

/

i

/

/

\
\

\

N \
>

AND T L E ,
BRU :k
T FRJ A -C 'OT1 A, A N I)
F R E - CLA' ( F’ROC )UC1 S

20

10
0

feb Mar Apr May June July Aug Sept Oct N
ow




N

SEASONAL UNEM PLO YM EN T.
,t

9 y.
.—

isand
loyees

rTHLY FLUCTUATIONS IN THE NUMBER OF EMPLOYEES IN SPECIF!
FDUSTRIES IN THE UNITED STATES, 1909 AND 1914—Concluded.
Feb Mar Apr May June July Aug Sept Oct Nov

800

190
180
i 70
160
150

4

\

/
\

Jr
2* ■

%

/

/

/

f. ^A
..

140
130

1SO
100

W ( )M E N 'S

90
80

c

r~
O
____ = L_

110
'H it i 6

70
60
50
40
30

20
10

0
70

60
50
40
30
20
10

0

40

J

30
20

10
0

Feb




Mar

Apr May June July Aug Sept O ct

Nov

40

INDUSTRIAL U NEM PLO YM EN T.

10.—PERCENTAGES OP UNEMPLOYMENT OP ORGANIZED WAGE EARNERS IN
NEW YORK STATE IN THE BUILDING, CLOTHING, AND METAL TRADES, AND IN
PRINTING, 1904 TO 1916.
Per cent.

Chart




SEASONAL U N EM PLO YM EN T.

41

METHODS OP REDUCING SEASONAL UNEMPLOYMENT.

While it is not within the scope of this examination of the statistics
of unemployment to discuss remedies, it is interesting to note the
changes Drought about in the degree of seasonal unemployment in
those industries in which it has been given special attention. As

11.—PERCENTAGE OF MEMBERS OF TRADE-UNIONS IDLE IN THE WOODWORK­
ING AND FURNITURE INDUSTRY OF NEW YORK STATE, BY MONTHS, 1909 TO 1915.
Per cent.

Chart

the difficulty lies in such fundamental conditions as those represented
by the market or by factors which accompany production, the reduc­
tion of this sort oi unemployment is primarily a matter of market
analysis or of factory management.
The reduction in the degree of seasonal unemployment which has
occurred in some instances appears to have been accomplished by—
(1) “ Smoothing” the market—making demand more even, from
month to month, and in cases where the market is hopelessly seasonal,



42

INDUSTRIAL U NEM PLO YM EN T.

spreading orders oyer more months of the year or filling in the months
of low demand by developing other products of a character for use in
a different season.
(2) Making output more uniform and stabilizing production by
storage, in spite ol unevenness of demand.
(3) Where neither of these methods is possible, stabilized employ­
ment may be promoted through training employees to do two or
more jobs, using them, for example, in a different department when
work in their own department is slack, or in repair and maintenance
work.
What has been accomplished in these respects through intelligent
analysis and planning is seen from the following instances:
A manufacturer of Christmas cards and novelties found that most
of his business was concentrated in the months immediately preceding
the Christmas holidays. During that time his employees were more
than busy, but during the remainder of the year orders were slack
and the plant ran with less than half its autumn working force.
The problem was attacked both as a matter of better business and as
a means of affording steadier employment to wage earners. Salesmen
were instructed to take as many orders as possible during the earlier
months of the year. Buyers of Christmas cards and novelties were
reminded that there would be a rush for Christmas cards in November
and December, and the advantages of selecting and ordering them
early were explained, prompt deliveries being assured and on some
items a price advantage being offered. The result was a largely
increased volume of orders during the first half of the year, which kept
the factory fairly busy during months in which business was pre­
viously slack. In addition the management developed a line of
other products the demand for which was not especially seasonal
and which could be depended on as “fillers.” Thus stabilized sales
were followed by stabilized production and employment.
A concern manufacturing ready-to-wear clothing found that its
sales ran heavy in the spring and fall but in between were seasons
when demand was slack and it was difficult to keep the factory
force employed. To meet this situation the firm developed a line of
clothing manufactured from staple goods and of a conservative style
for which there was reasonably sure to be a good demand at all
seasons. This line was advertised widely and found a ready sale.
A company manufacturing women’s clothing, by making its
designs ahead, and planning, its production and selling its goods
well in advance of the immediate market, has been able to operate
its plant for 51 weeks of the year. The confidence of dealers m the
house, whose name and trade-mark were widely known, helped to
make the plan a success.
DEPRESSIONAL UNEMPLOYMENT.

The sharp reduction in the demand for goods which accompanies
the periodical business slumps known as depressions is responsible
for the laying off at such times of large numbers of wage earners.
The business cycle, at the peak of which are extra prosperous con­
ditions or “boom” times, and at the bottom depressions or panics,
is the result of a series of complex causes. These depressions have
come at more or less regular intervals, now and then being interfered
with by economic forces which are only partially understood.



DEPRESSIONAL UNEM PLO YM EN T.

43

Such depressions occurred in 1893, 1907-8, 1914-15, and we are
now apparently emerging from one more severe than either of the
two previous depressions. The reduction in the number of persons
employed in industry at such times is illustrated by Chart 12 relating
to Massachusetts and New Jersey factory employees. This chart35

« For figures on which this chart is based, see Tables 1 and 2 of the Appendix (p. 47).



44

INDUSTRIAL U N EM PLO YM EN T.

industrial unemployment ran (as nearly as can be determined)
between 25 and 30 per cent, more than half of this unemployment
appears to have been due to the depression.
A detailed study of the depressional factor in unemployment is
being made by a special subcommittee of the President's Conference
on Unemployment, which should result in a material addition to our
knowledge on the subject.
LABOR TURNOVER AND UNEMPLOYMENT.

A considerable proportion of the unemployment which exists year
after year is due to the failure of the man to fit the job or of the job
to last. The former is reflected in discharges, the latter in lay offs.
Both of these factors enter into the figures of labor turnover, in­
creasing the monthly or yearly rate of labor change.
There are two striking facts which stand out from the data avail­
able regarding labor turnover.
1. In a very large number of factories the number of new em­
ployees hired during each year to take the place of those who leave
is greater than the average total number of employees on the pay
rolls during the year. The fact that during seven years in order to
keep 691,681 workers on the pay rolls of the factories covered in
Table 15 it was necessary to hire 856,731 persons, while 840,637 were
separated from the pay roll during the same seven years, means
that the average rate oi separation per year was more than 100 per
cent. This is the equivalent of hiring an entirely new force every 12
months—that is, replacing every old employee with a new one oftener
than once a year. And in this average are included the employees of
many of the more progressive plants, those which have employment
records and have turned their attention to the matter of reducing
turnover; in many plants the labor change ratio has run and runs
much higher, frequently to 200 or 300 per cent per year and over.
2. Three-fourths of all the separations from factory pay rolls are
made on the initiative of the employee—that is, about 75 per cent
are voluntary “ quits," and only 25 per cent are discharges and lay
offs. Discharges are due largely to the incompetence oi the work­
man; lay offs usually represent business conditions which necessitate
cutting down the working force. These two are elements in unem­
ployment. The percentage of separations from the pay roll due to
discharges is a fairly constant factor, increasing only a little in bad
times and falling only slightly in prosperity. In the study of the
separations of over 840,000 employees of American industries made
by Brissenden and Frankel for the United States Bureau of Labor
Statistics, it was found that an average of 16 per cent of all separations
were due to discharges; 11 per cent to lay offs, and 73 per cent to
voluntary “ quits." In bad years, such as 1914, lay offs ran up to
31 per cent; in the prosperous years, such as 1912 and 1913, they fell
as low as 6 and 7 per cent. Even in 1914, when the lay offs rose, the
proportion of “ quits" was 49 per cent or approximately one-half of
the total separations.
Table 15 shows the percentages of total separations due to dis­
charges, lay offs and voluntary leaving for wage earners in 261 estab­
lishments m the years 1910 to 1915, and 1917-18.




COST OF UNEM PLO YM EN T— ITS EFFECT ON INDUSTRY,

45

NUMBER AND PER CENT OF SEPARATIONS IN MANUFACTURING INDUS­
TRIES, BY TYPE OF SEPARATION, 1910 TO 1915, AND FOR 12 MONTHS ENDING MAY
31, 1918.1

T a bl e 1 5 .—

Year.

Per cent due to—
Num­ Num­ Num­ Number of separations.
ber of ber of ber of
estab­ work­ acces­
Total.
Dis­ Lay
lish­
Dis­ Lay
sions. charges. offs. Quits.
ments. ers.
charges. offs. Quits.

1910.......................
1911.......................
1912.......................
1913.......................
1914.......................
1915.......................
1917-18..................
Total..........

7 23,273 15,936
53,506
78,843
182,276
50 118,195 82,585
28 78,984 50,421
108 207,303 393,164
261 691,681 856,731
13 56,577
72,526
20 134,823
35

2,608
9,837
13,628
32,094
19,565
6,946
51,400
136,078

514
5,082
4,057
13,334
29,737
8,536
29,833
91,093

14,230
35,716
49,806
141,035
46,660
26,862
299,157
613,466

17,352
50,635
67,491
186,463
95,962
42,344
380,390
840,637

15 3
19
20 10
6
17
7
20 31
16 20
14
8
16 11

82
71
74
76
49
63
79
73

1 Monthly Labor Review, U. S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, June, 1920, p. 48.
COST OF UNEMPLOYMENT: ITS EFFECT ON INDUSTRY.

Unemployment, affecting as it does the continuity of both produc­
tion and distribution, concerns manufacturer and merchant as
vitally as the wage earner and the public.
The lessened buying power represented by the unemployment of
a million and a half wage earners means no slight subtraction from
the total demand for goods supplied by American producers and deal­
ers. At an average rate of pay, which is purposely placed low in
order not to overestimate its volume, it amounts to a loss of between
six and eight million dollars a day,36 or between $1,500,000,000 and
$2,500,000,000 for the 250 to 300 days of the working year. If to
this be added an equal amount for wages lost through part-time
employment, the total can not be less than from three to five billion
dollars. It is much higher37 at a time such as the present, when two
or three times as many persons as usual are unemployed. Even in
normal times, therefore, the unemployment of 16,000,000 industrial
wage earners for a period of 60 working days in the year represents a
loss of no small volume.
Three or five billion dollars less in the tills of merchants means a
correspondingly smaller volume of orders for factories. The employed
are active consumers. When consumers are unemployed and stop
calling for goods factory wheels cease turning. When these factories
close, more men are out of work and without purchasing power from
current earnings. The more unemployment, the less the demand
for goods; the less the demand, the more factory shutdowns, the
more unemployed, and the less the demand for goods. So it goes
around in a vicious circle, unemployment causing a reduction of
buying power and demand, which in turn produces further unemploy­
ment.
The effect of this reduced buying power is very evident. The
workman who had become a consumer of good shoes and collars, a
8The average wage of the common labor employed by the United States Steel Corporation was about
6
$4 per day in June, 1921; skilled labor is much more highly paid. The average wage of factory workers in
New York State in March, 1922, was about $24 per week.
8 Other estimates place the present loss from unemployment at $6,000,000,000 a year.
7




46

INDUSTRIAL U NEM PLO YM EN T.

buyer and reader of newspapers and magazines, a user of many
nonluxury conveniences not previously afforded, ceases on account
of lack of income to be able to include these things among the prod­
ucts which he commonly buys. His standard of living for a time
drops back to lower levels than before, and recovery is very slow.
The lowering of the demand level and the standard oi living of thou­
sands of workers which accompanies a severe depression such as the
present one means fewer comforts in regular demand by the wage
earner and less future business for all.
It is thus to the interest of the entire business community to main­
tain a reasonably high level of general well-being. To this end work­
men should be kept employed with reasonable steadiness at fair
wages; this is only good business.
Further, idle men as well as idle machinery, for so much of the time
as they are idle and not producing goods, must be “ carried” and
provided for by those who are busy—either other wage earners or
the consumer who eventually pays the bills.
A further question which is always present, and which is peculiarly
pertinent at such a time as this, is whether it is good policy to permit
the human machines, which are so much more than mere machines,
to deteriorate. Unemployment means a lowering of physical
vitality through less adequate sustenance, the reduction of industrial
initiative, ana a lessening of self-respect. A struggle for a bare ex­
istence replaces comfortable living for the family of the unemployed,
even such existence being made possible by the aid of friends and,
as a last resort, assistance from relief organizations. These con­
siderations constitute the human side of the unemployment problem.
Is it sound public policy to let either the health or the morale of the
workers go to pieces ?
Because unemployment is both a social and a business problem,
the elements composing it have beenpresented in considerable detail
in order to see at wh^at point they offer the most promising solution.
NEED OF BETTER EMPLOYMENT STATISTICS.

For a country of such extended industrial interests as the United
States, the lack of adequate statistics on employment matters is
surprising. Only by the most persistent and painstaking piecing
together of existing data can they be made to present a reasonably
adequate and consistent picture of American employment conditions.
At a time like the present when the country needs to know how much
unemployment there is, where it is, how it compares with past
unemployment, how rapidly it is growing or waning, and how much
is seasonal or depressional, we are confronted with great gaps in our
statistical knowledge, to be bridged only by information secured
piecemeal regarding conditions in particular industries. The primary
need issfor fuller and better data regarding employment and unem­
ployment, collected and published regularly by a responsible statis­
tical body of each State and of the United States.




APPENDIX.
STATISTICAL DATA OF EMPLOYMENT AND UNEMPLOYMENT.
T a bl e 1 .—

AVERAGE NUMBER OF PERSONS EMPLOYED IN MASSACHUSETTS INDUS­
TRIES, BY MONTHS, 1900 TO 1920.1

Num­
ber
of
Year. estab- Jan. Feb.
lishments.

Apr. May. June. July. Aug. Sept. Oct. Nov. Dec.

1900.
4,696 389,107 393,275 395,188 389,772 389,552 382, 342 369,070 374,251 380,663 386,760 388,792 390,970
4,658 393,625 395,334 400,078 390,746 396,022 321,740 390,075 395,540 403,728 410,996 415,322 412,875
1901.
1902.
4.673 423,731 424,979 429,796 425,413 427,718 424,719 424,827 427,035 436,040 443,741 445,982 443,072
1903.
4.673 447,418 449,531 452,599 441,701 440,340 445,364 440,367 438,333 445,059 451,222 448,455 445,129
4,730 439,196 439,677 443,390 441,087 434,729 429,115 422,895 411,430 419,444 434,844 438,770 440,686
1904.
5.055 461,337 467,342 472,535 473,710 474,149 471,201 469,206 475,381 483,331 484,868 488,956 490,879
1905.
1906.
5.055 503,191 505,177 509,203 508,475 507,037 504,205 500,120 502,772 507,959 515,242 522,124 522,163
5,671 537,869 547,051 552,517 548,319 545,131 542,823 533,666 538,712 543,343 544,879 533,087 506,946
1907.
6,044 481,348 476,229 471,918 463,837 460,859 463,059 460,788 468,192 491,159 507,713 508,421 506,038
1908.
1909. 11,684 565,750 572,618 579,519 576,618 576,379 576,055 573,462 581,008 594,686 601,533 604,466 612,615
7,939 584,657 590,453 590,763 585,541 580,744 568,439 555,466 562,781 567,125 575,280 584,108 585,216
1910.
8,132 584,158 586,445 591,880 586,466 575,328 569,077 564,765 571,490 583,344 594,430 598,948 599,982
1911.
1912.
8,271 593,183 >590,366 602,980 599,918 603,835 605,408 598,260 599,818 613,188 623,742 631,914 632,739
1913.
8,405 629,310 630,864 631,398 622,416 610,677 604,521591,692 602,634 613,814 619,348 623,022 621,210
1914.
12,013 626,776 628,535 633,583 628,344 619,082 611,928 595,609 588,703 589,194 590,992 587,141 580,489
9,707 567,502 575,765 584,116 581,950 580,479 581,699 581,220 593,754 604,754 624,313 636,677 645,391
1915.
9,829 662,688 672.550 682,689 682,584 677,829 675,595 672,858 675,904677,233 690,158 705,725 713,454
1916.
9,865 715,364 722,015 726,487 710,444 699,985 696,500 687,090 685,328 694,660 708,288 722,095 728,171
1917.
1918.
9,695 716,081 719,651 734,211 727,816 727,234 727,725 724,001 718,608 711,710 696,861 716,004 704,459
1919.
11,905 695,418 677,006 680,548 678,956 689,268 705,186 715,436 726,354736,208 741,732 751,713 765,546
10,221 756,859 748,819 755,002 747,075 738,841 719,041 696,579 683,464 668,541 656,046 610,398 557,525
1920.
i Annual reports of Census of Manufactures, Massachusetts Bureau of Statistics, 1900 to 1918; data for
1919 and 1920 received from the Massachusetts Department of Labor and Industries.
T able 2.—NUMBER OF EMPLOYEES IN MANUFACTURING ESTABLISHMENTS IN NEW
JERSEY, BY MONTHS, 1895 TO 1919.1
Num­
ber of
Year. estab- Jan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May. June. July. Aug. Sept. Oct. Nov. Dec.
lishments.
1895.
309 35,387 35,641 37,160 37,981 37,441 36,695 36,346 37,066 38,148 38,801 38,707 38,702
349 43,674 43,882 43,963 43,847 42,975 41,890 40,132 39,843 41,769 42,573 42,213 42,778
1896.
1897.
503 54,115 56,024 56,610 57,823 57,336 56,538 54,076 54,942 54,009 58,440 58,076 57,684
1898.
1,464 142,371 144,278 147,986 149,055 148,599 147,874 143,200 144,332 150,284 151,749 150,720 150,711
1899.
1,738 164,970 167,505 171,509 174,847 177,562 179,563 173,947 177,700 183,552 185,285 183,846 186,162
1900.
1,660 171,521 174,036 177,035 178,885 178,253 176,212 169,460 170,578 174,571 176,493 175,930 175,627
1901.
1,660 181,679 184,887 188,804 191,411 192,302 191,003 187,252 188,548 193,661 198,993 198,624 198,520
1902.
1,811 208,908 211,101 215,327 218,533 218,370 215,263 210,852 215,337 222,396 226,585 226,765 225,711
1,811 224,631 226,322 230,545 231,480 230,805 228,629 224,145 224,528 228,395 231,079 227,630 225,905
1903.
1904.
1,756 204,267 209,397 210,792 211,918 210,617 206,110 201,678 203,983 209,426 211,734 211,829 210,571
1905.
2,018 228,182 231,150 236,819 240,634 240,197 238,973 233,856 236,008 242,968 247,264 247,943 246,541
1906.
2,120 249,308 251,883 256,809 260,650 260,856 261,201 254,631 258,018 264,073 268,422 267,819 267,463
1907.
2,152 277,910 279,179 283,750 283,266 288,291 285,714 277,273 279,221 283,398 284,962 274,084 257,311
1908.
2,127 242,737 242,207 242,726 243,525 240,709 240,575 236,086 241,642 249,470 256,073 256,735 254,769
1909.
2,291 269,051 269,220 273,215 275,510 276,432 276,395 273,239 278,332 283,292 290,259 293,701 292,773
1910.
2,423 294,551298,398 303,651 304,935 303,527 302,251 292,435 298,007 301,511 307,925 309,032 306,616
1911.
2,475 301,891 303,567 308,009 308,501 306,209 303,620 297,375 302,170 306,272 309,456 309,979 307,291
1912.
2,556 312,1711314,849 319,006 319,232 323,395 321,117 317,229 323,479 328,515 330,585 335,315 333,933
1913.
2,638 334,579! 335,974 329,979 326,884 323,618 322,121 327,609 335,767 340,043 342,294 342,608 337,020
r914.
2,624 329,933 332,662 336,462 337,365 335,759 330,638 324,839 317,739 318,544 319,692 313,900 310,211
1915 .. . . 2,817 316,755 322,767 330,397 336,757 342,175 347,735 353,806 361,114 370,080 380,692 389,418 394,030
1916 ... . 2,950 410,781 416,932 428,464 432,171 435,359 438,228 438,995 438.701 445,417 450,580 457,020 459,393
463,149 466,441 469,988 465,388 464,119 461,527 460,250 463,306 469,876 475,736 482,256 481,571
1917
1918
476,749 482,763 491,394 495,998 503,385 506,641 514,868 512.701 514,114 503,510 493,011 486,077
1919
504,994 484,983 482,240 489,806 496,342 503,068 510,709 516,895 519,235 528,238 530,083 537,639
Annual reports of the Bureau of Industrial Statistics of New Jersey, 1895 to 1916; U. S. Census of Manu­
factures, 1919. Data for 1917 and 1918 received from the Bureau of Industrial Statistics of New Jersey.

1




47

48

INDUSTRIAL UNEM PLO YM EN T.

Table 3 .—PER CENT OF MEMBERS OF REPRESENTATIVE TRADE-UNIONS IN NEW
YORK STATE IDLE AT THE END i OF EACH MONTH, 1904 TO 1916, BY INDUSTRIES. *
METALS, MACHINERY, AND SHIPBUILDING.
Year.
1904....................
1905....................
1906....................
1907....................
1908....................
1909....................
1910....................
1911....................
1912....................
1913....................
1914....................
1915....................
1916....................

Jan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May. June. July. Aug. Sept. Oct. Nov. Dec.
13.7
9.4
7.1
5.5
30.1
25.7
9.8
10.5
17.0
7.6
15.7
28.8
3.6

13.8
7.9
5.1
5.6
35.0
24.8
9.1
12.9
15.6
9.1
18.4
24.9
2.9

6.2

13.0
5.4
3.7
32.4
17.9
6.4
18.8
12.3
16.2
26.8
16.1

6.8

13.3
4.1
4.5
4.5
37.4
15.3
16.8
14.6
6.7
16.5
8.3

6.0

21.8

16.1
4.6
4.7
4.9
35.3
14.5
5.7
32.7
13.4
6.7
16.0
13.8
8.7

10.0 8.0
8.8 3.8
8.8
4.1
2.8 8.8 24.7 30.9
7.5
6.2
12.0 22.8 21.7 20.9
7.1
8.5
6.1 6.1
8.2
9.2
9.7
25.4 24.4
12.8
7.5 10.2
10.0 21.1
21.4 16.2
30.6 32.0
8.1
5.0
4.0

14.7
4.2
4.8
4.4
31.9
13.2
33.9
9.1
13.9
9.9
7.2

13.2
9.5
5.0 4.7 4.5 3.4
3.5 4.0
5.4 7.4
16.0
29.9 23.9 26.5
14.3 8.9 8.7 5.9
6.9
9.1
31.0 26.2 28.0 26.8
8.5 8.3 8.3 8.4
8.3
9.0 9.5
17.4 19.4
24.9
11.9
6.5 18.6

CLOTHING AND TEXTILES.
1904....................
1905....................
1906....................
1907....................
1908....................
1909....................
1910....................
1911....................
1912....................
1913....................
1914....................
1915....................
1916

20.5 28.3 39.4 35.7 38.4 37.1
12.8 10.2 9.4 7.3 5.3 11.1
5.2
8.1 12.5 16.3 11.3 10.4 10.2 15.4
9.2 6.5 8.2 10.8 8.2
43.9 46.8 49.6 48.6 45.2 22.8
16.4 27.2 20.3 23.1 13.0
11.8 14.6 32.2 36.0 32.6 30.7 51.0
19.9

30.0
15.2
5.4
44.1
29.3
35.1
34.8
68.3
42.4
64.4
44.7

21.4
7.4
56.6
37.4
38.1
15.9

19.0
14.6
30.1
33,8
27.2
13.5

17.5
13.3
35.1
26.2
31.2
12.4

38.7
38.0
39.6
28.3
56.6
16.0

27.4
52.1
35.7
31.5
36.3
27.7

15.2
52.9
33.2
57.0
38.3

19.1
9.6
3.5
7.1
19.0
13.7
57.8
3.0
30.8
47.9

16.3
10.8
8.0 35.5
9.4

18.9
11.9
10.7
29.2
23.8
15.7
3.8
23.4
27.8

8.0 2.0
20.1 12.6

24.1
23.7
26.1
4.5
6.4
27.6
30.0
9.1

14.1
8.5
8.4
36.4
21.4
17.0
29.4
28.5
35.4
45.1
56.4
24.0

14.4
7.3
11.5
43.6
16.6
21.4
47.9
59.4
80.2
65.0
47.9
31.5

PRINTING, BINDING, ETC.

11.0
8.6 8.6
12.8 21.8
11.6
21.2 12.1
11.0
11.6 6.8
6.6
8.2 8.6 10.0
6.6 6.2
6.6

10.8

9.4
9.8
10.8 14.4 12.1
13.0
13.2
12.1
11.7 11.1
21.6
8.1 6.8 13.6 15.0
7.1
12.6
9.2
3.4
2.8 2.8 6.0 6.1
4.0
5.1
3.3
7.4
6.1
9.4
10.1 11.1 11.0 10.0 12.8 12.4 6.9
8.4
7.4
6.6

1904.................... 15.0
16.0 10.4 11.3 12.4
9.9 8.5 9.8
13.8 9.3 9.2 11.3
1905.................... 7.3 7.3 7.2
1906.................... 19.6 18.9 18.1 17.0 16.9 16.3 15.8 15.7 15.5 15.8
13.1 11.5
11.5 11.5 10.3
12.3
1907.................... 12.9
21.7
19.6 17.5 14.5 13.9
21.7 22.3
1908....................
6.4 7.4
9.9
10.9
1909....................
6.4 3.1 3.3
7.8
1910.................... 5.9 7.2
1911.................... 4.6 4.8 4.6 8.5 6.7 4.6 3.3 3.8 4.0 5.6
1912.................... 4.3 4.1 7.8 5.1 5.2 6.5 9.3 5.9 6.7 5.1
4.4 7.4 4.8 10.9
1913................... 6.3 6.4 8.7 6.3 6.5
7.4 8.5 10.3 9.9
11.9 14.7
1914....................
9.7 9.9 9.6 10.9
9.3
1915.................... 9.3
7.3
7.2
1916 .
BUILDING, STONE WORKING, ETC.
1904....................
1905....................
1906....................
1907....................
1908....................
1909....................
1910....................
1911....................
1912....................
1913....................
1914....................
1915....................
1916 .

38.3
41.5
14.3
40.4
55.6
52.3
33.9
36.8
43.3
27.7
47.4
51.8
34.8

31.2
32.6
16.4
36.1
56.3
46.2
37.0
44.5
40.0
29.1
sa 1
52.8
36.0

42.6
31.8
9.4
32.5
53.6
34.7
33.6
47.7
38.2
27.9
45.3
46.0
37.3

12.8 12.8
9.3
18.8
6.7 7.6

17.7
42.2
29.0
20.3
34.1
19.9
19.6
40.2
41.2
27.5

14.9
38.3
23.5
17.9
31.5
20.4
17.7
33.2
36.2
27.7

11.9
12.7
6.4
10.7
36.3
21.5
19.6
29.6
15.6
21.9
35.5
38.2
29.7

12.9 19.8
4.5
6.9
18.5
39.5 35.5
17.8 13.8
15.6 13.7
20.9 20.9
22.5 20.9
30.5 32.8
35.3 33.6
5.6
10.8
11.4

10.2 11.8

15.2
2.5
6.4
18.1
34.3
16.7
18.9
18.0
ia 2
20.3
35.7
28.9

i The reporting date from July, 1915, to June, 1916, was the 15th of the month.
* Special Bulletin No. 85 of the New York State Department of Labor, pp. 47-50.




12.6
5.2

7.3
25.1
35.2
16.5
19.5
12.3
24.3
35.0
23.9

17.1
7.5
32.5
36.7
18.5
23.5
26.6
28.5
44.0
23.9

10.2

21.8 12.6

32.9
8.4
19.2
42.1
44.3
29.7
30.4
35.5
19.9
41.4
48.2
30.9

49

APPENDIX— STATISTICAL DATA.

Table 3.—PER CENT OF MEMBERS OF REPRESENTATIVE TRADE-UNIONS IN NEW
YORK STATE IDLE AT THE END OF EACH MONTH, 1904 TO 1916, BY INDUSTRIES—Con­
cluded.
ALL INDUSTRIES COMBINED.
Jan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May. June. July. Aug. Sept. Oct. Nov. Dec.

Year.
1904....................
1905....................
1906....................
1907....................
1908....................
1909....................
1910....................
1911....................
1912....................
1913....................
1914....................
1915....................
1916

25.8
22.5
15.0
21.5
36.9
29.3
24.5
26.7
25.8
38.2
32.3
40.1
30.9

21.6 27.1 11.8 15.9 13.7 14.8 13.7 12.0 10.8 11.1 19.6
17.0
8.3 9.1 8.0 7.2 5.9 5.6 6.1 11.1
19.4 19.2
15.3 11.6 7.3 7.0 6.3 7.6 5.8 6.3 6.9 7.6 15.4
20.1 37.5 33.9 32.2 30.2 26.8 24.6 24.6 23.1 21.5 32.7
18.3 10.1 10.5 8.1 8.5 12.1 12.3 18.5 22.0
28.0
37.5
26.5 23.0 20.3 17.1 17.4 13.9 11.9 14.5 13.7 13.3 20.6
22.3 12.5 15.0 17.5 27.3
22.4 22.6 16.0 14.5 15.4 19.4
24.8 25.6 21.3 27.2 22.9 15.5 11.7 11.2 11.6 20.0 34.2
17.6 18.8 13.3 20.1 22.8 21.1 9.1 5.9 7.4 15.3 30.1
33.4 21.8 21.7 22.9 22.2 20.8 19.6 16.2 19.3 27.8 40.0
30.7 28.3 23.6 22.7 25.5 32.5 30.3 24.3 24.9 35.8 35.7
32.2 27.4 26.4 31.8 25.5 26.0 19.3 14.9 12.7 17.6 21.9
17.0 16.4 13.2 14.6 20.4
1

Table 4.—INDEX NUMBERS OF EMPLOYMENT IN REPRESENTATIVE FACTORIES IN
NEW YORK STATE, BY MONTHS, 1914 TO 1921.1
[June, 1914=100.]
1914 1915 1916 1917 1918 1919 1920 1921

Month.

111
112
100
112
101
102 120
122

121 121 112 122
121
111
121 122 110 122
111
120
121 88
121 88
122
122
120
121 120 122 100
122

92 108
113 123 93
January...............................................................................
123
94
94
February.............................................................................
March.................................................................................
94
123 124
125 95
123 94
April....................................................................................
123
95 115
92
97 113
Mav......................................................................................
90
June.....................................................................................
98 113 118 123 109
July...................................................................................... 97 97
117 125 113
115 117
August................................................................................. 92 96 113 116
116 117 92
117 118
September.......................................................................... 96
116 115 115 94
117
October............................................................................... 95
117 108 94
November........................................................................... 93 106
94
119
December............................................................................ 92 108
1 Data for 1904 to 1916 from Special Bulletin No. 85, New York State Department of Labor, p. 45; data
for 1917 to 1921 received from the New York Industrial Commission.
Table 5.—INDEX NUMBERS OF EMPLOYMENT IN REPRESENTATIVE FACTORIES IN
WISCONSIN, BY QUARTERS, 1915 TO SECOND QUARTER, 1920, AND BY MONTHS, JULY,
1920 TO DECEMBER, 1921.1
[First quarter of 1915=100.]
Year and quarter.

Index
num­
ber.

Year and quarter or month.

1915.
1920.
100 First quarter...
First quarter....................
Second quarter................
98 Second quarter.
104
Third quarter..................
Fourth quarter................
119 July..........
August___
1916.
First quarter....................
127 September
Second quarter................
128 October...
125 November.
Third quarter..................
133 December.
Fourth quarter................
1921.
1917.
138 January..........................
First quarter..................
134 February........................
Second quarter................
133 March..............................
Third quarter..................
137 April...............................
Fourth quarter................
May.................................
1918.
141 June................................
First quarter....................
July.................................
138 August............................
Second quarter................
140 September......................
Third quarter..................
139 October...........................
Fourth quarter................
November......................
1919.
138 December.......................
First quarter....................
130
Second quarter............ ..
134
Third quarter..................
142
Fourth quarter................
Data received from the Wisconsin Industrial Commission.

1




Index
num­
ber.
147
142
144
142
138
131
122
113
100
102

99
93
92
89
89
92
94
94
94
94

50

INDUSTRIAL UNEM PLOYM ENT.

T able 6.—NUMBER OF INDUSTRIAL WAGE EARNERS IN NEW HAMPSHIRE TJNE&
PLOYED AND WORKING PART TIME IN DECEMBER, 1920, ON JUNE 1, 1921, AND ON
JANUARY 1, 19221

Industry.

Number of
employees
Num­ under normal
ber of conditions.
estab­
lish­
ments.
Fe­
Male. male.

Number of
employees
idle on ac­
count of lack
of orders.

Number of
employees Total num­ Number of
idle on ac­ ber of unem­ employees
count of
ployed. working part
other
time.
reasons.

Fe­
Fe­
Fe­
Fe­
Male. male. Male. male. Male. male. Male. male.

December, 1920.
Automobiles, garage and
repairs.............................. 84
Bakers and confectioners.. 28
Bobbins....................... .
Boxes and box shooks___ 60
Cigars and tobacco............
4
Clothing.............................. 15
Composition novelties___
4
Cooperage........................... 14
Cotton, worsted, and silk
goods.............................. . 33
Creamery products...........
Doors, sash, and blinds...
9
Excelsior............................
9
Fiberboard and leatherboard products...............
9
Flour and grain mills.......
Foundry and machineshop products.................
Furniture........................... 23
Hosiery and knit goods...
Laundries........................... 46
Leather, dressed................ 18
Light, heat, and power....
Lumber, rough and fin­
ished ................ .............. 45
39
Miscellaneous.................
Monumental and granite
works........... ......... ........ 30
Needles...............................
Printing and binding....... 39
Pulp andpapar................. 27
Ship and boat building...
Shoes, slippers, and shoe
findings........................... 74
Steam rp.pairs
road and electric rail­
Wood novelties and wood­
en goods........................... 53
Woolen goods.................... 43
Total......................... 2884
Total, males and fe­
males.....................

819

267
766
20 2,759

10

11
66
20
21

1,033
143
407
955
15,485
63
350
116
544
177
4,616
1,103
854
204
1,239
636
1,678
1,312
1,026
362
665
7,281

2 541
8 12
1 1,0151
210 202
1

1,020

20

12

70 174
80
41
4
62 47
372 1,170 115
318
5
764
84 592
251 239
27 59
13,036 5,142 3,810
7
3
84
53
258 234 186
26
839 834 352
84 312
2,246 338 1,080
392
24
49
260 640 162
4
53
94
37
474 351
58
500
576 184 326
276
5
19
314 586
87

8

12

6

10

2 6 2

228
63
42
4
7
9
59
17
1,170 115 913 145
286
285
85 592
63
47
239
3 261
4
98
217 39 5,359 3,849 3,778 2,629
3
3
84
9
53
17 254 203
47
57
17
25
15

2
2

125
67
218
i

1

210 88 21
121

11

891 352
329
59 z 363 1,139
26
54
5
655 162

8

6

219
418
718
184
586

8
6
2
9,456 6,0 5,627 3,837 167 121 5,794
10
41
20 2,185 20 21
20

527
35
243
3
306 628
40
275
65
5
14
198 30
117
326 107 ’ 126
13
19
93
87 2,044

12

66

11

3,958 2,626 1,380

47
1,460 345 556 119 26 33 582 152 324
4,320 1,775 2,412 1,067 19 31 2,431 1,098 841 224
62,281 28,986 19,835 12,095 2,283 611 22,118 12,706 12,776 5,598
91,267

31,930

2,894

34,824

18,374

1 Data received from the New Hampshire Bureau of Labor in letters dated Feb. 23 and Apr. 13,1922.
2Not including 60 establishments not reported.




51

APPENDIX— STATISTICAL, DATA.

Table 6.—NUMBER OF INDUSTRIAL WAGE EARNERS IN NEW HAMPSHIRE UNEM­
PLOYED AND WORKING PART TIME IN DECEMBER, 1920, ON JUNE 1, 1921, AND ON
JANUARY 1,1922—Continued.

Industry.

Number of
employees
Num­ under normal
ber of condi pons.
estab­
lish­
ments.
Fe­
Male. male.

Number of Number of
employees employees Total num­ Number of
employees
idle on ac­ idle on ac­ ber of unem­ working part
count of lack count of
ployed.
other
time.
of orders.
reasons.
Fe­
Fe­
Fe­
Fe­
Male. male. Male. male. Male. male. Male. male.
June 1,19 31.

21
10

Automobiles, garage, and
repairs..............................
Bakers and confectioners..
Bobbins..............................
15
Boxes and box shooks....... 60
3
Cigars and tobacco............
Clothing..............................
15
3
Composition novelties___
Cooperage........................... 14
Cotton, worsted, and silk
goods................................ 37
3
Creamery products...........
9
Doors, sash, and blinds...
4
Excelsior.............................
Fiberboard and leatherboard products..............
Flour a^d grain mill.........
Foundry and machineshop products..............-. 65
Furniture........................... 18
Hosiery and knit goods... 18
Laundries........................... 24
Leather, dressed................ 14
7
Light, heat, and power__
Lumber, rough and fin­
23
ished ................................
Miscellaneous..................... 34
Monumental and granite
works...............................
9
Needles................................
Printing and binding....... 18
30
Paper and pulp..................
Shoes, slippers, and shoe
f i n d i n g s .........................................
70
Steam and electric rail­
r o a d r p .n a i r s _______________
14
Wood novelties and wood­
en goods........................... 42
43
Woolen goods....................
Total........................ 645
Total, males and fe­
males..... ..............

10
1

11

8

512
242
470
2,783
1,071
456
387
750
15,872
31
400
72
631
38
4,704
1,063
930
134
1,160
333
1,356
1,069
864
231
615
6,325
10,177
2,047
1,411
4,258
60,392

1
1
156
1 2
1 541 25
2
3
166
14 216
991
99 694
73
1
8 2085 1941 88 24
66
92
5
21
110 160 220 62
10
02
12,701
900 1,0 2,317 1,531
5
1 112
1
112
50
39
30
69
25
26
113
45
368
285
822
238

132
4
166
984
5
63
208
82
758

24
14
99
7
186 3
160
5 28
829 142 173

246

171

53

1

914 1,501 281
28 217
2,371 330 609
32
302
3
266 445 155
33
7
24 614
477 251 142
3 474
51 187
398
19
231
658 742
6,558 3,224 2,149
9
397
323 509
1,831 249 173
29,309 11,738 5,591

63
13
4

21

89,701

110

17,029

330 168
420
34
7
77 43
1,822 466
2,288

53

334
3
445

293 1,840
664 136
7
32
155 172

12 1,564
230

55

242

2
10 68 401

a Not including 25 establishments not reporting.




171

302

135

236
1 122 3891
30
31

7 128
856
251 142 190 137
474
48
62
51 187
47
19
78 23
3,302
1,143
98
3,554 2,317 1,225 778
9
92
817
543 117 491
326 216 256 143
13,560 5,757 12,208 3,876

12 68

100

19,317

16,084

52

INDUSTRIAL U NEM PLO YM EN T.

Table 6.—NUMBER OF INDUSTRIAL WAGE EARNERS IN NEW HAMPSHIRE UNEM­
PLOYED AND WORKING PART TIME IN DECEMBER, 1920, ON JUNE 1, 1921, AND ON
JANUARY 1,1922—Concluded.

Industry.

Number of
employees
Num­ under normal
ber of conditions.
estab­
lish­
ments.
Fe­
Male. male.

Number of Number of
employees
employees idle on ac­ Total num­ Number of
employees
idle on ac­
ber of unem­ working part
count of lack count of
ployed.
other
time.
of orders.
reasons.
Fe­
Fe­
Fe­
Fe­
Male. male. Male. male. Male. male. Male. male.
January 1, 1 9 2 2 .

Automobiles, garage and
repairs............................ 19
Bakers and confectioners..
Bobbins.............................. 13
57
Boxes and box shooks—
Cigars and tobacco............
Clothing..............................
14
Composition novelties___
3
Cooperage...........................
14
Cotton, worsted, and silk
goods................................ 30
Creamery, products..........
3
9
Doors, sash, and blinds.. Excelsior.............................
4
Fiberboard and leatherboard products..............
Flour and grain mills.......
Foundry and machineshop products................. 64
Furniture...........................
17
Hosiery and knit goods... 17
Laundries........................... 24
Leather, dressed................ 14
Light, heat, and power...
Lumber, rough and fin­
ished ................................
Miscellaneous..................... 33
Monumental and granite
works...............................
Needles................................
7
Paper and pulp.................. 25
Printing and binding.......
18
Shoes, slippers, and shoe
findings............................ 71
Steam and electric rail­
road repairs..................... 13
Wood novelties and
39
wooden goods.................
Woolen goods..................... 43
Total......................... 615
Total, males and
females..................

328
24
47
12 589 111 * 261
289
39
34
2 2,659 315 775
1,012 702 17
303
4
103
387 239 201
1,163
13 116

10
1

6
22
11

4

112
10 161 277
49
21
796
1
4
17
201
20 3 136
728 39 41 991
1 705
5
14
46
6
94
1,430
165 28
20 3 173
186
283
3
21
67
327
1 36 254 536
197
2
461
3
26
15
60
162
167

65
16

1 8 88
ioo
1
1
22
6 234 82
168
1,124
68
2
144
283 105 124
21 39g 20
67
12
26
54
201 63 15
564
9
14
630
1 86 1,881 14
3

15,719 12,296 952
33
5
404
70
75
32
594 188
94
40
4,793 465 1,402
52 166
1,131
1,018 1,720 173
3
137 295
1,151 208 327
36
361
28 500
1,307
1,582 631 459
774
536
28
284 494
9
14
6,864 289 500
130
584
9,462 6*243 1,108 683 17
1,125 694 935 562
161
54
215
833
1,392 311 527 191 15
35
4 542 195 248
4,341 1,778 850 312
7
857 322 708 245
60,588 26;996 9,329 3,188 528 119 9,857 3,307 8,782 2,799

1

2
201
2,012 12
87,584

86 1

11

10

12,517

647

4Not including 24 establishments not reporting.




1

4
17
42
24
3
9
15 156
51
60 538
162
167
3
769 1,528 1,464
3
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