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Jobs Down 33K, Employment Up 906K, Full-Time Employment Down 65,000

Courtesy of Mish

Initial Reaction

Today’s establishment survey shows jobs declined by 33,000.

The way the BLS accumulates household survey stats leads to some seemingly-wild mathematical discrepancies.

Supposedly, employment rose by 906,000 (Table A).

Full-time employment (Table A-9) declined by 65,000 but part-time employment rose by only 81,000.

Of the 81,000 increase in part-time workers, those who are employed part-time for economic reasons (Once again Table A) declined by 133,000 and the number of voluntary part-time workers declined by 436,000.

None of this ever adds up, but the BLS says it’s not supposed to. This month was particularly wild.

Let’s dive into the details in the BLS Employment Situation Summary, unofficially called the Jobs Report.

BLS Jobs Statistics at a Glance

  • Nonfarm Payroll: -33,000 – Establishment Survey
  • Employment: +906,000 – Household Survey
  • Unemployment: -331,000 – Household Survey
  • Involuntary Part-Time Work: -133,000 – Household Survey
  • Voluntary Part-Time Work: -436,000 – Household Survey
  • Baseline Unemployment Rate: -0.2 to 4.2% – Household Survey
  • U-6 unemployment: -0.3 to 8.3% – Household Survey
  • Civilian Noninstitutional Population: +205,000
  • Civilian Labor Force: +575,000 – Household Survey
  • Not in Labor Force: -368,000 – Household Survey
  • Participation Rate: +0.0 to 663.1 – Household Survey

Employment Report Statement

The unemployment rate declined to 4.2 percent in September; total nonfarm payroll employment changed little (-33,000). A sharp employment decline in food services and drinking places and below-trend growth in some other industries likely reflected the impact of Hurricanes Irma and Harvey.

Unemployment Rate – Seasonally Adjusted

The above Unemployment Rate Chart is from the BLS. Click on the link for an interactive chart.

Nonfarm Employment Change from Previous Month

Nonfarm Employment Change from Previous Month by Job Type

Hours and Wages

The Average Weekly Hours of all private employees was flat at 34.4 hours. The average weekly hours of all private service-providing employees fell was flat at 34.2 hours. Average weekly hours of manufacturers was flat at 40.7 hours. All are the same or within 0.1 hours from a year ago.

The Average Hourly Earnings of private workers rose $0.08 to $22.23. Average hourly earnings of private service-providing employees rose $0.09 to $22.01. Average hourly earnings of manufacturers rose $0.02 to $20.93 following a downward revision in July.

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