Friday, June 03, 2016

May Employment Report: 38,000 Jobs, 4.7% Unemployment Rate

by Bill McBride on 6/03/2016 08:43:00 AM

From the BLS:

The unemployment rate declined by 0.3 percentage point to 4.7 percent in May, and nonfarm payroll employment changed little (+38,000), the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Employment increased in health care. Mining continued to lose jobs, and employment in information decreased due to a strike.
...
The change in total nonfarm payroll employment for March was revised from +208,000 to +186,000, and the change for April was revised from +160,000 to +123,000. With these revisions, employment gains in March and April combined were 59,000 less than previously reported. Over the past 3 months, job gains have averaged 116,000 per month.
...
In May, average hourly earnings for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls increased by 5 cents to $25.59, following an increase of 9 cents in April. Over the year, average hourly earnings have risen by 2.5 percent.
emphasis added
Payroll jobs added per monthClick on graph for larger image.

The first graph shows the monthly change in payroll jobs, ex-Census (meaning the impact of the decennial Census temporary hires and layoffs is removed - mostly in 2010 - to show the underlying payroll changes).

Total payrolls increased by 38 thousand in May (private payrolls increased 25 thousand).

Payrolls for March and April were revised down by a combined 59 thousand.

Year-over-year change employmentThis graph shows the year-over-year change in total non-farm employment since 1968.

In May, the year-over-year change was 2.39 million jobs.  A solid gain.


The third graph shows the employment population ratio and the participation rate.

Employment Pop Ratio, participation and unemployment rates The Labor Force Participation Rate decreased in May to 62.6%. This is the percentage of the working age population in the labor force.   A large portion of the recent decline in the participation rate is due to demographics.

The Employment-Population ratio was unchanged at 59.7% (black line).

I'll post the 25 to 54 age group employment-population ratio graph later.

unemployment rateThe fourth graph shows the unemployment rate.

The unemployment rate declined in May to 4.7%.

This was way below expectations of 158,000 jobs.

I'll have much more later ...