The number of unemployed persons, at 14.0 million, was “essentially unchanged” in August, according to the Labor Department, and the unemployment rate was unchanged at 9.1%. The nation’s unemployment rate has shown little change since April, according to the announcement.
Moreover, the change in total nonfarm payroll employment for June was revised from a gain of 46,000 to just 20,000, and the change for July was revised from a gain of 117,000 to just 85,000.
Among the major worker groups, the unemployment rates in August were:
- adult men – 8.9%
- adult women – 8.0%
- teenagers – 25.4%
- whites – 8.0%
- blacks – 16.7%
- Hispanics – 11.3%
- Asians – 7.1%
According to the Labor Department, employment in most major industries changed little over the month, though health care continued to add jobs, and a decline in information employment reflected a strike. Government employment continued to trend down, despite the return of workers from a partial government shutdown in Minnesota.
The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks and over) was “about unchanged”, according to the Labor Department, at 6.0 million in August, accounting for 42.9% of the unemployed.
The number of persons employed part time for economic reasons (sometimes referred to as involuntary part-time workers) rose from 8.4 million to 8.8 million in August. These individuals were working part time because their hours had been cut back or because they were unable to find a full-time job, according to the Labor Department.
Health care employment rose by 30,000 in August. Ambulatory health care services and hospitals added 18,000 and 8,000 jobs, respectively. Over the past 12 months, health care employment has grown by 306,000, according to a Labor Department press release.
Employment in mining continued to trend up in August (+6,000), and within professional and business services, computer systems design and related services added 8,000 jobs in August. Employment in temporary help services changed little over the month (+5,000) and has shown little movement on net so far this year, according to the Labor Department.
Employment in the information industry declined by 48,000 in August (about 45,000 workers in the telecommunications industry were on strike and thus off company payrolls during the survey reference period, according to the DoL).
Manufacturing employment was essentially unchanged in August (-3,000), following a gain of 36,000 in July. For the past 4 months, manufacturing has added an average of 14,000 jobs per month, compared with an average of 35,000 jobs per month in the first 4 months of the year.
Elsewhere in the private sector, employment in construction; trade, transportation, and utilities; financial activities; and leisure and hospitality changed little over the month.
Government employment continued to trend down over the month (-17,000), despite the return of about 22,000 workers from a partial government shutdown in Minnesota, employment in state government changed little in August (+5,000). Employment in local government continued to decline. Since employment peaked in September 2008, local government has lost 550,000 jobs, according to the report .
The average workweek for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls edged down by 0.1 hour over the month to 34.2 hours. The manufacturing workweek was 40.3 hours for the third consecutive month; factory overtime increased by 0.1 hour over the month to 3.2 hours. The average workweek for production and nonsupervisory employees on private nonfarm payrolls edged down to 33.5 hours in August, after holding at 33.6 hours for the prior 6 months.
In August, average hourly earnings for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls decreased by 3 cents, or 0.1 percent, to $23.09.
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