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The Fastest Growing and Declining Industries in the U.S. (2021-2031P)

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U.S. Employment Trends by Industry (2021–2031)

The labor force is always shifting, responding to technological or societal changes.

For that reason, keeping an eye on the fastest growing industries can help workers and businesses stay on top of the crucial trends driving employment.

Today, we look through projections from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) on the fastest growing industries, as well as those that are the fastest declining, by percentage employment change between 2021 and 2031.

Ranked: Fastest Growing Industries By Employment Change

Event Promoters, Agents, and Managers top the list of fastest growing industries, with an impressive predicted growth of 39%, employing over 180,000 workers by 2031.

Amusement Parks and Arcades follows close behind, with an expected 38% increase—adding over 60,000 new employees—in the same time period. Ranked third, the Performing Arts industry will start the next decade with around a 100,000-strong workforce, up 35% from 2021.

Below is the full list of BLS’ projected fastest growing industries, ranked by percent change in employment, between 2021–2031.

RankIndustrySectorChange
(2021-2031)
% Change
(2021-2031)
1Event Promoters,
Agents & Managers
Leisure &
Hospitality
50,800+39%
2Amusement Parks
& Arcades
Leisure &
Hospitality
60,500+38%
3Performing
Arts Companies
Leisure &
Hospitality
28,400+35%
4Individual &
Family services
Health Care850,000+31%
5Mining Support
Activities
Mining69,700+31%
6Spectator SportsLeisure &
Hospitality
36,500+31%
7Other Information
Services
Services
& Other
112,900+30%
8Other Personal
Services
Services
& Other
87,200+28%
9Travel &
Reservation
Services
Professional &
Business Services
32,300+23%
10Agriculture &
Forestry Support
Agriculture
& Forestry
26,200+23%
11Artists, Writers
& Performers
Leisure &
Hospitality
11,500+23%
12AccommodationLeisure &
Hospitality
333,700+23%
13Private Education
Services
Services
& Other
169,200+22%
14Government TransitServices
& Other
61,200+22%
15Home Health
Care Services
Health Care330,100+22%
16Health PractitionersHealth Care205,500+20%
17Film, Video, &
Audio Recording
Services
& Other
75,300+20%
18Museums &
Historical Sites
Leisure &
Hospitality
27,600+20%
19Computer
Systems Design
Professional &
Business Services
455,200+20%
20Professional,
Scientific &
Technical Services
Professional &
Business Services
144,100+18%

Note: Services & Other sector includes Information, Education and State & Local Government industries.

All of the top three industries belong to the Leisure and Hospitality sector, which accounts for seven of the 20 fastest growing industries. This outsized performance reflects recovery more than pure growth, as the BLS notes that the Leisure and Hospitality sector was unduly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, giving it a lower-than-usual baseline in 2021.

Ranked fourth by employment change percentage is Individual and Family Services, though it is actually expected to see the largest growth in total employment terms, adding 850,000 new workers by the end of the decade. It is one of three industries in the Health Care and Social Assistance sector with large projected growth, thanks to an increased need for care service due to an aging American population.

Not to be missed is Computer Systems Design, projected to grow by 20% in employment thanks to growing demand for computing infrastructure and IT security. Due the industry’s sheer size in employment force with 2.3 million workers in 2021, that’s close to half a million additional workers over the next decade.

Ranked: Fastest Declining Industries By Employment Change

Tobacco Manufacturing leads the group of industries expected to register employment declines by 2031, with a projected decrease of 53% in employment, bringing its already small workforce down to only 5,000 employees by the end of the decade. This stark decline is not necessarily driven by waning smoking habits, as cigarette sales in the U.S. went up during the pandemic. Instead, further automation of the industry may replace tobacco manufacturing employees.

Another industry facing a similar situation is CDs & Tapes Manufacturing, which is expected to witness a 51% reduction in employees by 2031.

Below is the full list of BLS’ projected fastest declining industries, ranked by percent change in employment, between 2021–2031.

RankIndustrySectorChange
(2021-31)
% Change
(2021-2031)
1Tobacco
Manufacturing
Manufacturing-5,700-53%
2CDs & Tapes
Manufacturing
Manufacturing-5,800-51%
3Apparel & Leather
Manufacturing
Manufacturing-41,800-36%
4PrintingManufacturing-96,800-26%
5Coal MiningMining-9,500-26%
6Newspaper &
Book Publishers
Services
& Other
-60,000-24%
7Satellite &
Telecommunications
Services
& Other
-19,300-22%
8Cable ProgrammingServices
& Other
-9,700-21%
9Other Furniture
Manufacturing
Manufacturing-7,600-20%
10Engine & Power
Transmission
Equipment
Manufacturing
Manufacturing-14,800-17%
11Railroad Rolling
Stock Manufacturing
Manufacturing-3,100-16%
12Rental ServicesServices &
Other
-22,200-15%
13General Machinery
Manufacturing
Manufacturing-39,800-15%
14Iron Ore & Steel
Scrap Smelting
Manufacturing-10,600-13%
15Lighting Equipment
Manufacturing
Manufacturing-5,600-13%
16Metalworking
Manufacturing
Manufacturing-21,100-13%
17LoggingAgriculture
& Forestry
-6,000-13%
18Textile MillsManufacturing-26,100-13%
19Agriculture,
Construction &
Mining Machinery
Manufacturing
Manufacturing-25,500-13%
20Office Furniture
Manufacturing
Manufacturing-12,600-13%

Most of the industries facing large total employment contraction belong to the Manufacturing sector. The troubles of American manufacturing aren’t new, but the variety of industries presented suggests a mix of factors causing slumps across the sector.

Some industries like Printing, Cable Programming, and Newspaper and Book Publishers face shifting consumption habits.

Meanwhile, others like Textiles, Apparel, and Furniture Manufacturing are expected to suffer from further automation and shifted production abroad.

Factors Shaping Future Employment Trends in the U.S.

It’s important to note that these projections by the BLS were released in September 2022. That means they do not reflect the rapid rise of generative AI like ChatGPT and how they have begun to affect the economy.

A recent Goldman Sachs report, for example, stated that AI could replace 300 million jobs—almost the size of the U.S. population—around the world in the next 10 years.

That makes it an open and important question as to whether AI or powerful demographic trends, such as slower population growth and an aging workforce, will be the most impactful in terms of determining the future employment landscape.

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U.S. Debt Interest Payments Reach $1 Trillion

U.S. debt interest payments have surged past the $1 trillion dollar mark, amid high interest rates and an ever-expanding debt burden.

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This line chart shows U.S. debt interest payments over modern history.

U.S. Debt Interest Payments Reach $1 Trillion

This was originally posted on our Voronoi app. Download the app for free on iOS or Android and discover incredible data-driven charts from a variety of trusted sources.

The cost of paying for America’s national debt crossed the $1 trillion dollar mark in 2023, driven by high interest rates and a record $34 trillion mountain of debt.

Over the last decade, U.S. debt interest payments have more than doubled amid vast government spending during the pandemic crisis. As debt payments continue to soar, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) reported that debt servicing costs surpassed defense spending for the first time ever this year.

This graphic shows the sharp rise in U.S. debt payments, based on data from the Federal Reserve.

A $1 Trillion Interest Bill, and Growing

Below, we show how U.S. debt interest payments have risen at a faster pace than at another time in modern history:

DateInterest PaymentsU.S. National Debt
2023$1.0T$34.0T
2022$830B$31.4T
2021$612B$29.6T
2020$518B$27.7T
2019$564B$23.2T
2018$571B$22.0T
2017$493B$20.5T
2016$460B$20.0T
2015$435B$18.9T
2014$442B$18.1T
2013$425B$17.2T
2012$417B$16.4T
2011$433B$15.2T
2010$400B$14.0T
2009$354B$12.3T
2008$380B$10.7T
2007$414B$9.2T
2006$387B$8.7T
2005$355B$8.2T
2004$318B$7.6T
2003$294B$7.0T
2002$298B$6.4T
2001$318B$5.9T
2000$353B$5.7T
1999$353B$5.8T
1998$360B$5.6T
1997$368B$5.5T
1996$362B$5.3T
1995$357B$5.0T
1994$334B$4.8T
1993$311B$4.5T
1992$306B$4.2T
1991$308B$3.8T
1990$298B$3.4T
1989$275B$3.0T
1988$254B$2.7T
1987$240B$2.4T
1986$225B$2.2T
1985$219B$1.9T
1984$205B$1.7T
1983$176B$1.4T
1982$157B$1.2T
1981$142B$1.0T
1980$113B$930.2B
1979$96B$845.1B
1978$84B$789.2B
1977$69B$718.9B
1976$61B$653.5B
1975$55B$576.6B
1974$50B$492.7B
1973$45B$469.1B
1972$39B$448.5B
1971$36B$424.1B
1970$35B$389.2B
1969$30B$368.2B
1968$25B$358.0B
1967$23B$344.7B
1966$21B$329.3B

Interest payments represent seasonally adjusted annual rate at the end of Q4.

At current rates, the U.S. national debt is growing by a remarkable $1 trillion about every 100 days, equal to roughly $3.6 trillion per year.

As the national debt has ballooned, debt payments even exceeded Medicaid outlays in 2023—one of the government’s largest expenditures. On average, the U.S. spent more than $2 billion per day on interest costs last year. Going further, the U.S. government is projected to spend a historic $12.4 trillion on interest payments over the next decade, averaging about $37,100 per American.

Exacerbating matters is that the U.S. is running a steep deficit, which stood at $1.1 trillion for the first six months of fiscal 2024. This has accelerated due to the 43% increase in debt servicing costs along with a $31 billion dollar increase in defense spending from a year earlier. Additionally, a $30 billion increase in funding for the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation in light of the regional banking crisis last year was a major contributor to the deficit increase.

Overall, the CBO forecasts that roughly 75% of the federal deficit’s increase will be due to interest costs by 2034.

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