Employment in the U.S. oilfield services and equipment sector rose by an estimated 4,677 jobs to 650,587 in December, according to preliminary data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) after adjustments to November numbers and analysis by the Energy Workforce & Technology Council (Energy Workforce). November’s adjusted number of 645,910 is up from the preliminary number of 645,486. Gains in December were made in five of the seven categories tracked by Energy Workforce.
The December increases make OFS employment the highest since numbers started to drop in March 2020, and roughly 56,000 off the pre-pandemic mark in February 2020 of 706,528. Overall, U.S. employers added 223,000 jobs, down minimally from 263,000 in November, but still holding steady. The participation rate increased slightly to 62.3% in December, and the overall unemployment rate dropped to 3.5%. While the labor market remains relatively strong, it is cooling compared to the first two quarters of 2022. Additionally, most increases in hiring came in the leisure and hospitality, healthcare and construction sectors.
“Our industry is hiring and continues to build on its workforce across America to ensure we are meeting the growing global demand for energy,” said Energy Workforce & Technology Council CEO Leslie Beyer. “The trending increases in hiring is encouraging for our industry and workforce that was forced to make significant reductions in 2020. Even with a reduced workforce, our industry has been able to meet the spikes in demand and is producing close to pre-pandemic levels while developing new technology and deploying innovative production processes that are lowering emissions. Further investments and a level regulatory landscape are needed to unlock the full power of American energy, providing energy security for our nation and that of our allies while continuing to decrease global emissions and lowering energy costs.”
December State-by-State Breakdown