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Thread: U.S. adds 136,000 jobs in September

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    U.S. adds 136,000 jobs in September

    Retail and manufacturing both lost jobs. 22,000 of the added jobs were government.

    The numbers: The economy added 136,000 new jobs in September, the government said Friday. Economists polled by MarketWatch had forecast a 150,000 increase.

    This is the slowest pace of job growth in four months, as businesses grew more cautious about hiring, but employment gains for August and July revised up by a combined 45,000,

    And in a separate survey, the U.S. unemployment rate dropped to 3.5%, the lowest rate since December 1969.

    One dark spot in the report was that the increase in worker pay over the past 12 months fell to 2.9% from 3.2%. Average hourly earnings were little changed in September following an 11-cent gain in August.
    Government added 22,000 workers in September, but only 1,000 of the jobs were due to federal hiring for the 2020 Census. Economists had expected a much bigger increase in census workers.

    Retailers shed 11,000 jobs and manufacturers dropped 2,000 workers.

    Stepping back, the pace of job growth has slowed from 223,000 per month in 2018 to 158,000 over the last three months.
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    Friday’s jobs report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) confirmed Wednesday’s release from ADP: The U.S. economy remains strong and robust, employing record numbers of Americans and paying them more than ever.
    In addition to reporting that the U.S. economy added 136,00 new jobs in September, other key takeaways from the BLS report include:
    • The unemployment rate dropped further in September, to 3.5 percent, the lowest since December 1969;
    • The jobless rates for adult males was 3.2 percent, for adult females it was 3.1 percent, for teenagers it was 12.5 percent, for blacks it remained at a record low of 5.5 percent, for Hispanics it hit 3.9 percent (a new record low), and among Asians it was 2.5 percent;
    • The nation’s “underemployment” rate (those who are unemployed as well as those who are working part-time but would like to be working full-time) fell to 6.9 percent, the lowest reading since December 2000;
    • For those with less than a high-school education, the unemployment rate fell to 4.8 percent, the first time that measure has dropped below five percent since 1992;
    • Payroll data for July and August were revised upward by 45,000; and
    • The number of job postings exceeded the number of unemployed workers by more than a million.

    What’s notable is the dearth of concerns about the decline in the Institute for Supply Management’s manufacturing index that was reported on Wednesday that sent Wall Street down. Also missing from the conversation are any comments from any of the Democrat hopefuls. No doubt they know that the president will be nearly impossible to beat in November 2020 with an economy behaving this well, so it’s better to say nothing at all.
    The key takeaway from both reports this week is this: The U.S. economy continues to fire on all cylinders, employing record numbers of people across nearly every industry, sector, demographic and company size. Those reports explain why concerns over a recession have all but disappeared from the public forums.

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