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  1. Social Security and Retirement
  2. Retirement Age and Social Security
  3. Working at Home
  4. Longer Years of Retirement
  5. Employment trends
  6. Foreign workers in the United States
  7. Mexican Workers in the United States
  8. Workplace Safety Standards
  9. Work-related Injuries and Deaths
  10. Growth of Large Corporate Farming
  11. Union Membership Across the United States
  12. Laws Regarding Working Women
  13. Labor Contracts in the United States
  14. Right-to-Work Laws
  15. Public worker unions in the United States
  16. Unemployment insurance
  17. Equal Opportunity Employment Laws
  18. Workers’ Compensation
  19. Minimum Age for Agricultural Employment
  20. Minors in the Workplace
  21. Minimum Wage
  22. Employment of Persons with Disabilities
  23. Major Equal Employment Legislation in the U.S.
  24. Employment in the Service Sector
  25. Unemployment
  26. State’s Unique Worker’s Compensation Laws
  27. Life on Unemployment
  28. Minimum Wage and Poverty
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Workers in large kitchen wash food before cooking
Two food service workers prepare a school lunch.
Photo Courtesy of the United States Department of Agriculture. Photo by Ken Hammond.
Employment in the Service Sector
Employment in the United States is shifting from agriculture and the manufacturing sector to the service sector. Service sector jobs are those that do not involve the manufacturing of a product or extracting raw materials from nature. This includes people who work in telecommunications, insurance, and banking, as well as store clerks and transportation workers. In 1950, half of all workers worked in manufacturing. By 2000, employment in the manufacturing sector had dropped to 18 percent. Conversely, employment in the service sector has grown dramatically. In 1970, 66 percent of workers worked in services. By 2000, employment in the service sector had grown to 80 percent. This pattern is typical of advanced industrial societies. One reason for the shift in employment is that low-paying, low-tech manufacturing jobs have been moving to developing countries. Developed countries have concentrated on medium and high technology manufacturing, which require less labor-intensive production methods. However, many jobs in the service sector do not pay as well as manufacturing jobs, nor do they include the same benefits. In addition, good jobs in the service sector may require higher education and advanced training, which displaced manufacturing workers may not have.
Special Terms: service sector

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