According to government data issued Friday, in March, the U.S. economy added 216,000 jobs and the unemployment rate fell to 8.8 percent. With the jump in private payrolls, the labor market has started to rebound, many economists assert. Nonetheless, there are industries that continue to suffer and are projected to perform poorly.
A recently released report from IBISWorld identifies 10 industries that it predicts will experience difficulty even as other industries begin to experience sustained growth again. The report states that “industries go through life cycles, and largely speaking, these are growth, maturity and decline.”
All of the industries in the report were chosen because they met certain criteria: They are all in the decline phase of their life cycle; they posted large revenue losses during the past decade; and they all predict declining revenue growth through 2016. Formal wear rental stores, for example, are forecast to post a 17 percent decline in revenue by 2016 – on top of the 28.5 percent plunge in revenue they experienced from 2000 to 2010.
Moreover, what’s interesting about the list is that some of the industries identified are actually relatively new themselves, but are still being phased out because of the jaw-breaking speed at which technology changes. DVDs, for example, have only been around for little more than a decade, but with the proliferation of Internet-based streaming and the surge in popularity of companies like Netflix and Hulu, the technology is all but becoming obsolete.
Though steeped in lore, newspaper publishing is also one of the industries that is dying out, according to the report. Newspapers have continued to suffer as consumers shift their habits away from print form and toward the Internet. In an attempt to adapt, the New York Times, thought of as the most influential paper in the U.S., recently introduced a system through which online readers will now have to pay for content they read online after they’ve gone through a certain number of free articles each month.
Globalization has also hurt certain industries in the U.S. Mills, apparel manufacturing and formal wear and costume rental stores all have been hurt by the abundance of cheap goods that have flooded U.S. markets over the past two decades. U.S. manufacturers simply cannot keep prices at the levels set by competition from abroad, where workers are paid far less and costs are lower.
Technological improvements have also hurt wired telecom providers, video postproduction services, record stores and photofinishing (photo printing). These industries are simply being phased out as technology has changed the way Americans and people around the world take in and process information. Landlines have sunk in popularity as smartphone and cell phone sales have boomed, while digital cameras have all but eliminated the need for standard photo printouts. Record stores have also felt the pinch from the iTunes era as more consumers than ever purchase music online.
If you’re looking for a change or thinking about changing your career, here are the 10 key dying industries that you should avoid – unless you’re hoping to single-handedly save them yourself.
1. Wired Telecommunications Carriers
3. Newspaper Publishing
4. Apparel Manufacturing
5. DVD, Game & Video Rental
6. Manufactured Home Dealers
7. Video Postproduction Services
8. Record Stores
10. Formal Wear & Costume Rental