Friday, October 02, 2009

Employment Report: 263K Jobs Lost, 9.8% Unemployment Rate

by Bill McBride on 10/02/2009 08:30:00 AM

From the BLS:

Nonfarm payroll employment continued to decline in September (-263,000), and the unemployment rate (9.8 percent) continued to trend up, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. The largest job losses were in construction, manufacturing, retail trade, and government.
Employment Measures and Recessions Click on graph for larger image.

This graph shows the unemployment rate and the year over year change in employment vs. recessions.

Nonfarm payrolls decreased by 263,000 in September. The economy has lost almost 5.8 million jobs over the last year, and 7.2 million jobs during the 21 consecutive months of job losses.

The unemployment rate increased to 9.8 percent. This is the highest unemployment rate in 26 years.

Year over year employment is strongly negative.

Percent Job Losses During Recessions The second graph shows the job losses from the start of the employment recession, in percentage terms (as opposed to the number of jobs lost).

For the current recession, employment peaked in December 2007, and this recession was a slow starter (in terms of job losses and declines in GDP).

However job losses have really picked up earlier this year, and the current recession is now the worst recession since WWII in percentage terms, and 2nd worst in terms of the unemployment rate (only early '80s recession was worse).

The economy is still losing jobs at about a 3.2 million annual rate, and the unemployment rate will probably be above 10% soon. This is a very weak employment report - just not as bad as earlier this year. Much more to come ...

Note: The the preliminary benchmark payroll revision is minus 824,000 jobs. (This is the preliminary estimate of the annual revision - this is very large).

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