Insurers in the United States shed 6,900 jobs last month according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. In its July 2 report, the Bureau noted that nationwide, 125,000 jobs were lost, disappointing economists looking at employment numbers that had been growing slightly over the last several months.

Employment in the private sector continued on the increase, giving credence to reports that part of the nationwide loss was due to temporary U.S. census employees’ finishing their work last month. Overall, the nation’s unemployment rate fell to 9.5%

Two industry sectors gained jobs from May to June, health insurance and reinsurance. As the health insurance industry readies itself for pending compliance requirements as a result of President Obama’s health care reform initiatives, the health sector was the only industry segment that continues to experience growth in employment. That sector gained 1,100 jobs in since May 2009 to 436,500.

Reinsurers gained 200 jobs to a total of 25,600, though the category had dropped 7.6% over the past 12 months, notes the report.

Other segments experienced the following:

•    Life: experienced more of a downward trend, (2.8%) between 2009 and 2010 to a total of 343,200 jobs

•    Property/casualty jobs were down 4% to 462,500

The Bureau also listed seasonally adjusted payroll stats as part of its July 2 report.  Again, health insurers were out in front, with a rise noted of 5% year-over-year to $991.80 a week. Life insurers also experienced an increase, averaging upwards of 7.3% or 1,048.73 a week from the year before.

Property/casualty insurers increased payrolls 5.4% or $1,045.98; and, reinsurance employees experienced the largest one-month jump in pay at 16.7% or $967.19.  The Bureau reports a 10.3% increase in pay for insurance agents and brokers; and claims adjusters saw in increase of 8.3% in pay or $957.97.

The Bureau, which categorizes jobs by nonfarm and farm, noted that despite the increase in pay among sectors, insurance seasonally adjusted employment numbers, which reflect the most recent 12 months of data) were 2.179 million in June, a drop of 3.1% as opposed to the nonfarm job drop of 0.1% nationwide.

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