BLS Releases October 2019 Employment Situation (Oct 2019)
Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 128,000 in October, and the unemployment rate was little changed at 3.6 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Notable job gains occurred in food services and drinking places, social assistance, and financial activities. Within manufacturing, employment in motor vehicles and parts decreased due to strike activity. Federal government employment was down, reflecting a drop in the number of temporary jobs for the 2020 Census.
The change in total nonfarm payroll employment for August was revised up by 51,000 from +168,000 to +219,000, and the change for September was revised up by 44,000 from +136,000 to +180,000. With these revisions, employment gains in August and September combined were 95,000 more than previously reported. (Monthly revisions result from additional reports received from businesses and government agencies since the last published estimates and from the recalculation of seasonal factors.) After revisions, job gains have averaged 176,000 over the last 3 months.
In October, food services and drinking places added 48,000 jobs. Job growth in the industry has averaged 38,000 over the past 3 months, compared with an average monthly gain of 16,000 in the first 7 months of 2019. Employment in social assistance increased by 20,000 in October and by 139,000 over the last 12 months. Most of the gain occurred in individual and family services, which added 17,000 jobs over the month and 111,000 over the year. In October, employment in financial activities rose by 16,000, with gains in real estate and rental and leasing (+10,000) and in credit intermediation and related activities (+6,000). Financial activities has added 108,000 jobs over the last 12 months.
Employment in professional and business services continued to trend up in October (+22,000). The industry has added an average of 33,000 jobs per month thus far in 2019, compared with an average gain of 47,000 jobs per month in 2018. Health care employment continued on an upward trend in October (+15,000). Health care has added 402,000 jobs over the last 12 months. Manufacturing employment decreased by 36,000 in October. Within manufacturing, employment in motor vehicles and parts declined by 42,000, reflecting strike activity. Federal government employment was down by 17,000 over the month, as 20,000 temporary workers who had been preparing for the 2020 Census completed their work. Employment in other major industries—including mining, construction, wholesale trade, retail trade, transportation and warehousing, and information—showed little change over the month.
In October, average hourly earnings for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls rose by 6 cents to $28.18. Over the past 12 months, average hourly earnings have increased by 3.0 percent. In October, average hourly earnings of private-sector production and nonsupervisory employees rose by 4 cents to $23.70.
The full BLS press release on the October 2019 employment situation can be accessed below.
The next employment situation report for November 2019 is scheduled to be released on Friday, December 6, 2019.