Friday, June 01, 2018

May Employment Report: 223,000 Jobs Added, 3.8% Unemployment Rate

by Bill McBride on 6/01/2018 08:42:00 AM

From the BLS:

Total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 223,000 in May, and the unemployment rate edged down to 3.8 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Employment continued to trend up in several industries, including retail trade, health care, and construction.
...
The change in total nonfarm payroll employment for March was revised up from +135,000 to +155,000, and the change for April was revised down from +164,000 to +159,000. With these revisions, employment gains in March and April combined were 15,000 more than previously reported.
...
In May, average hourly earnings for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls rose by 8 cents to $26.92. Over the year, average hourly earnings have increased by 71 cents, or 2.7 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 223 thousand in May (private payrolls increased 218 thousand).

Payrolls for February and March were revised up by a combined 15 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 2.363 million jobs.

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

Employment Pop Ratio, participation and unemployment rates The Labor Force Participation Rate was decreased in May to 62.7%. 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 increased to 60.4% (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 April to 3.8%. 

This was above the consensus expectations of 185,000 jobs, and the previous two months combined were revised up by 15,000.  A strong report.

I'll have much more later ...