According to a report released today by economist David Autor of MIT, the polarization of labor is an increasing trend in the United States. Over the last three decades middle-skilled positions have lost a significant share in the US economy, and were especially hard hit in the recent recession. Sales workers, office and administrative workers, production workers, and operators represented almost 60% of employment in 1979. In 2007, that number was just below 50%, and in 2009, 45.7%. According to Autor, men in the middle sector have it even worse than women, with male educational attainment and labor force participation slowing more quickly than the female equivalents. The loss of manufacturing jobs due to outsourcing, etc. has been particularly difficult on male middle-skill employees. As this trend continues, the gap between high-school educated and college-educated employees grows significantly.