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Expand chart
Data: Indeed; Chart: Will Chase/Axios

Jobs are coming back more slowly in America's top tech centers than in other cities — but it's not the tech jobs that are lagging, according to a new analysis from the jobs site Indeed.

What's happening: Pandemic-era remote work is still keeping white-collar workers in tech hubs at home, and that's slowing down the recovery of local shops and restaurants in those communities.

The big picture: Scores of jobs in big cities' central business districts — from the bodegas serving morning coffee to the fast casual lunch spots to the nearby boutiques — depend on foot traffic from office workers. Remote work, and its staying power, could make many of those jobs disappear for good.

Details: Indeed looked at Austin, Baltimore, Boston, Raleigh, San Francisco, San Jose, Seattle, and Washington, DC — U.S. tech hubs, defined by Indeed as cities with populations over 1 million that have the highest percent of technology job postings.

  • In these cities, retail and food service jobs have seen steeper drops than in other metro areas.
  • Retail job postings fell 16% in these cities between February 2019 and February 2021, compared with 0% in all other U.S. cities.
  • Food service jobs postings fell 36% in the tech centers in that same time period. In other metros, the drop was 17%.

What to watch: "It's too soon to say whether this is a permanent slowdown," says Jed Kolko, the report's author and Indeed's chief economist.

  • The lost retail and restaurant jobs could come back in new places, he says. "We might see a shift from traditional business districts to residential neighborhoods, if the downtown lunch becomes midday takeout."

Go deeper

The post-pandemic economy has already arrived

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

With the recession officially ending in April 2020, we're now 16 months into the recovery and the contours of the post-pandemic economy have taken shape.

Why it matters: While the coronavirus continues to infect roughly 100,000 new Americans every day, it's no longer driving the course of the economy.

Biden touts huge jobs report as U.S. vaccination rate hits 50%

President Biden trumpeted the strong July jobs report on Friday as evidence that his economic plans are working, but emphasized that more work still needs to be done to ensure the economy's full recovery as the Delta variant continues to spread.

Why it matters: The U.S. added 943,000 jobs in July, while the unemployment rate fell from 5.9% to a new pandemic-era low of 5.4%. But the jobs survey was taken in mid-July — meaning it doesn’t fully reflect possible effects from the recent surge in COVID-19 infections driven by the Delta variant.

The 49-day wait to get an engineering job

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

Engineering job seekers wait an average of 49 days to get hired after submitting job applications, per a new LinkedIn analysis.

The big picture: Employers are desperate to fill a record number of open positions across industries, but the hiring process is still taking a long time for some types of jobs.