The U.S. economy added 194,000 jobs in September, according to the latest report by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). While falling short of job gain expectations, possibly in part due to a large decline in government employment and potential concerns about the Delta variant, the unemployment rate dropped 0.4% from 5.2% to 4.8% and was better than the expected 5.1%. The number of unemployed persons fell by 710,000 to 7.7 million.
The employment-to-population level increased to 58.7%, its highest since March 2020. Monthly job growth has averaged 561,000 thus far this year. Labor force participation is 1.7% lower than February 2020 and was little unchanged from August at 61.7%. Wages continue see an increase of 4.6% year after year. Slow labor force participation and rising wages show the issue employers are facing in finding workers to fill positions.
Key highlights from the latest BLS report:
- With 7.7 million currently unemployed, the unemployment rate is now at 4.8%, 0.4% lower than the month prior.
- For college-degreed workers aged 25 and over, the unemployment rate slid down from 2.8% in August to 2.5% in September.
- For those with some college or an associate degree, the rate is 4.5%.
- Notable job gains in leisure and hospitality, in professional and business services, in retail trade, and in transportation and warehousing.
Jobs Added by Industry:
- Leisure and hospitality added 74,000 jobs
- Professional and Business Services added 60,000 jobs
- Retail trade added 56,000 jobs
- Transportation and Warehousing added 47,000 jobs
- Information Industry added 32,000 jobs
- Social Assistance added 30,000 jobs
- Manufacturing added 26,000 jobs
- Construction added 22,000 jobs
- Wholesale trade added 17,000 jobs
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