Men were hit hardest by job losses during the recession, but they have been way ahead of women in landing newly created jobs since the downturn officially ended in June 2009, the Los Angeles Times finds. Some 80% of the 2.9 million jobs created over the last three years have been filled by men, including 61% of the jobs created over the last year. The rebound in manufacturing jobs, where men dominate, explains some of the disparity, but men have also been filling more jobs in traditionally female-dominated sectors like retail.
"Gender stereotypes still exist; many men don't want to work on the retail floor," says American Apparel honcho Dov Charney, but "more and more men are interested in fashion because gender definitions are changing, because the world is saying it's OK." Men now fill 51% of America's 14.75 million retail jobs—but that's not necessarily good news for anyone, reports the Times; it notes that these jobs typically pay less than the jobs men previously occupied. Men are beginning to take a bigger share of jobs in other sectors, too, including education and health care, while women have been hit by continued job losses in government, an area they have dominated.