The US economy saw a remarkable surge in job additions for September, with a staggering 336,000 new positions created. This figure nearly doubled the anticipated 170,000 jobs forecasted by economists surveyed by Bloomberg. However, the Hollywood strikes continue to cast a shadow on the employment landscape and the US economy, as the writers strike recently concluded while the actors strike persists.
Data released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics on Friday morning revealed a notable decline in employment within the motion picture and sound recording industries, dropping by an additional 7,000 jobs after a substantial decrease of 17,000 in August. The decline, the report stated, is a direct consequence of the ongoing labor disputes.
Since the strikes commenced in May, the affected industries have collectively witnessed a grim decline of 45,000 jobs.
Amidst these developments, striking Hollywood actors are scheduled to resume negotiations with studios on Friday. This follows the successful conclusion of the writers strike just last week.
SAG-AFTRA, the union representing approximately 160,000 professionals encompassing actors, announcers, recording artists, and media personnel worldwide, initiated their strike on July 14. The dispute emerged after failed negotiations with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP), acting on behalf of major studios including Warner Bros. (WBD), Disney (DIS), Netflix (NFLX), Amazon (AMZN), Apple (AAPL), NBCUniversal (CMCSA), Paramount (PARA), and Sony (SONY).
Echoing the writers’ concerns, SAG-AFTRA is advocating for heightened safeguards pertaining to the integration of artificial intelligence in the media and entertainment sphere. Additionally, their demands encompass improved compensation, enhanced working conditions, and augmented residuals from streaming platforms, given the surge in direct-to-streaming content.
The Writers Guild of America (WGA), which spearheaded the writers’ strike, achieved significant milestones after nearly 150 days of protest. Their gains include stricter regulations governing AI usage, mandatory staffing quotas, boosted streaming residuals, and more.
Observers within the industry widely anticipate that SAG-AFTRA will follow suit in securing a favorable agreement. However, the union has asserted its intent to tailor any deal to specifically address the interests of its membership base, despite reviewing the WGA’s accord.
Estimates from the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corp. indicate that the 2007-2008 writers strike inflicted a colossal $2.5 billion blow to the Los Angeles County economy. This time around, the economic impact is projected to be even more substantial.
Kevin Klowden, Chief Global Strategist at the Milken Institute, approximates that the protracted five-month-long writers strike, coupled with the ongoing actors strike, will exact a toll of over $5 billion on the national economy. Klowden emphasized that lost wages constitute the primary factor contributing to this substantial economic hit. Notably, states beyond California, including popular filming locations such as New York, Atlanta, Albuquerque, and Pittsburgh, are poised to feel the reverberations of this labor dispute.
The Hollywood strikes have emerged as a critical factor in shaping the trajectory of the US economy, underscoring the intricate interplay between labor dynamics in the entertainment industry and broader economic trends.
Source: Yahoo Finance