Friday, June 04, 2010

May Employment Report: 20K Jobs ex-Census, 9.7% Unemployment Rate

by Bill McBride on 6/04/2010 08:30:00 AM

From the BLS:

Total nonfarm payroll employment grew by 431,000 in May, reflecting the hiring of 411,000 temporary employees to work on Census 2010, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. ... The unemployment rate edged down to 9.7 percent.
Census 2010 hiring was 411,000 in May. Non-farm payroll employment increased 20,000 in May ex-Census.

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 increased by 431,000 in May. The economy has lost 0.6 million jobs over the last year, and 7.4 million jobs since the recession started in December 2007. Ex-Census hiring, the economy only added 20,000 jobs in May.

The unemployment rate decreased to 9.7 percent.

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).

The dotted line is ex-Census hiring. The two lines will rejoin later this year when the Census hiring is unwound.

For the current recession, employment peaked in December 2007, and this recession is by far the worst recession since WWII in percentage terms, and 2nd worst in terms of the unemployment rate (only early '80s recession with a peak of 10.8 percent was worse).

This is a very weak report. The decrease in the unemployment rate was because of a decline in the participation rate - and that is not good news. I'll have much more soon ...

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