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On the radar: Net change in striking workers in October survey reference period up 46,000

The net change in striking workers for the CES survey reference period ended October 12, 2019 was up 46,000. The total number of workers on strike was 47,700.

The change reflected the addition of 46,000 UAW members from the strike begun on September 16, 2019. The the union and GM reached a tentative agreement on October 16 after the end of the reference period. The new contract was voted on on October 25 and looked set to pass. The workers will not be on the next CES survey for the reference period ending on November 16. However, the workers will be subtracted from the October Employment Situation when that data is released at 8:30 ET on Friday, November 1 and then added back in for the November report when it is released on Friday, December 6 at 8:30 ET.

Another 1,700 workers in wired telecommunications carriers remain on strike in an action which began on March 28, 2017.

The strike at Chicago Public Schools which affects about 32,000 teachers went into effect on October 17, after the end of the reference period. If teachers return to work before November 16, the strike will not affect the November payroll data.

Strikes affecting large numbers of workers are rare and generally do not last for more than a few weeks. Their impacts on the payroll data tend to be exaggerated and short.


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