New York City might be buzzing with job growth, but not necessarily on Wall Street.
Last week, a new report by the Partnership for NYC found the city lost 50,000 financial services jobs — many of them mid-level — from 2000-2013, leaving many lamenting the supposed fall of Wall Street and wondering which industries are growing as financial sector jobs decline.
"In terms of financial services we are not actually losing jobs," said Alicia Glen, deputy mayor for housing and economic development. "The convergence of technology into these other industries begin to blur the lines, we're seeing an explosion in 'fintech,' and tech has infected in a good way all these traditional industries."
New York City added 14,000 private sector jobs in May, according to the New York State Department of Labor.
Healthcare and social assistance jobs saw the most growth over the last 12 months, adding 23,500 jobs in New York City. The professional, scientific and technical services industry increased by 14,700 jobs during the same period, and retail added 12,800 jobs.
From April to May 2015, arts, entertainment and recreation added the most jobs — 3,300 — while both administrative services, and health care and social assistance jobs both added 3,200 jobs each. The information field lost 1,200 jobs, manufacturing lost 1,100 jobs and wholesale trade jobs fell by 900.
Glen said the city believes the future of technology is in New York with it's diverse business and commerical capital scene, not a suburban office park. The city is also focusing on expanding life science jobs for New Yorkers.
The deputy mayor said "you don't have to have a PhD in molecular physics," and that lab techs with two-year degrees can make a good living.
Glen said the city is also invested in preserving the traditionally-strong creative economy, and promoting a $15 an hour wage for employees in the retail sector.
A report last winter by City Comptroller Scott Stringer found that although the city’s job growth rate had hit a 25-year high, the majority of the jobs added were low-paying.
"We feel we're diversifying New York City away from pure financial services," Glen said, adding the de Blasio administration is focusing on New Yorkers empowering themselves and advancing their careers, rather than just bringing in jobs and companies to the city.
For Kathryn Wylde, president of Partnership for NYC, which put out the Wall Street jobs report last week, the city can’t afford to lose the financial sector jobs, which also feed other top industries such as technology.
“Many of the jobs in high grossing areas like tech and professional services are dependent on the financial services industry,” Wylde told Metro, adding that financial service jobs are double the number of jobs in professional and real estate services. “The heart and core of our economy and the economy of any great world city is the financial and investment sector.”
Wylde, who has called for tax breaks and other incentives to keep finance jobs, said city and state government ought to “champion” the state’s top industry.
“The elected representatives of Detroit defend car manufacturing, Texas defends oil … we’d like to have the same kind of support from the representatives of New York. The financial industry is our primary industry and is simply not going to be replaced.”