Job growth holds steady in July
Friday, August 04, 2017
Employers added 209,000 nonfarm payroll jobs in July versus June's total of 220,000 jobs, according to the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics. And July's unemployment rate was 4.3 percent versus 4.4 percent in June and 4.3 percent in May, the BLS reported.
Payroll jobs rose in food services and drinking places, professional and business services, and healthcare in July. Employment increased in food services and drinking places by 53,000 in July, with a total of 313,000 new jobs created in the seven months of 2017. Professional and business services added 49,000 jobs in July, the average monthly employment growth of the past 12 months.
In the healthcare sector, July job creation totaled 39,000. Ambulatory healthcare services accounted for 30,000 jobs, with hospital payrolls adding 7,000 jobs. The U.S. healthcare industry created 327,000 jobs during the prior year, and it accounts for about one-sixth of the national economy, estimated to be $18.46 trillion in 2016.
Mining employment, a focus of President Donald Trump's "America First" blue-collar emphasis, remained basically static in July, adding 1,000 jobs. From October 2016 through June, the mining industry had grown an average of 7,000 jobs each month.
Job growth in other major industries — construction, manufacturing, wholesale trade, retail trade, transportation and warehousing, information, financial activities, and government — showed scant change during July.
Small businesses of 1-49 employees added 50,000 jobs in July, according to the Automated Data Processing Inc.'s small business research. Firms with 1-19 employees created 27,000 jobs. Companies of 20-49 employees added 22,000 jobs.
The labor force participation rate, or percentage of the labor force with paid work, was 60.2 percent in July, a slight rise from 60.1 percent in June and 60 percent in May. July's figure is a "new high for the recovery," according to economist Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research in Washington, D.C.
The Great Recession ended in June 2009. Subsequently, the economic recovery began and continues.
"The Conference Board's Consumer Confidence Index improved during July, and the differential between 'jobs plentiful' versus 'jobs hard to get' was a net 16.1 during July, up from 13.6 during June," according to Steven R. Drexel, an economist and president and CEO of Cornerstone Staffing Solutions, Inc. "July's differential was the highest reading since 2001."
The July BLS report draws on data from two sources: the household survey and establishment survey. The former "includes self-employed workers whose businesses are unincorporated, unpaid family workers, agricultural workers and private household workers" that the establishment survey excludes, according to the BLS.
In its small business jobs report for July, ADP said that 52,000 jobs were added in the service-producing sector. The goods-producing sector declined by 3,000 jobs.
ADP jobs data follows the BLS establishment and household jobs surveys. ADP adjusts its economic data to calibrate seasonal factors for more accurate measurements of monthly changes in nonfarm private-sector payroll employment.
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