Delayed Jobs Report Shows 148,000 Jobs Added Last Month, Lower Than Forecast
The good news is that the unemployment rate is down to 7.2 percent according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. But the not-so-great news is that the job growth has slowed. For September, 148,000 jobs were added. However for the first half of the year, an average of 195,000 jobs were added. A total of 175,000 were forecast for this report. There are 11.3 million people who are officially unemployed, and eight million people who are working part-time, according to The Los Angeles Times.
Retail (typically low-paying jobs), transportation and warehousing, and temp work led the way in September, each adding 20,000 workers for the month. “The 16-day partial shutdown of government offices and facilities, which began Oct. 1, had no direct bearing on the September employment data, but surveys and anecdotal reports indicate that the uncertainty over the budget stalemate weighed on employers and possibly their hiring decisions last month,” the LA Times added.
Among African Americans, the unemployment rate inched down .1 percent to 12.9 percent. The number of people who are “marginally attached” to the workforce, those who looked for a job at some point in the last year, was down from 2.5 million to 2.3 million.
The latest jobs report was 2 1/2 weeks late because of the government shutdown.
According to an analysis published in The Washington Post, the unemployment rates are uneven across the nation’s cities. In Yuma, AZ, the rate in August was 32.6 percent, the highest. In Rocky Mountain, NC, it’s 12 percent. But in Bismarck, ND it was 2.4 percent (the lowest) and in Minneapolis, it was 4.7 percent. California had the highest number of cities with an unemployment rate above 10 percent. According to WaPo, it’s just one indicator of the uneven economic recovery that the US is experiencing.
The Federal Reserve will meet next week to determine whether it’s time to wind down stimulus programs that have been in place to jump start the economy and keep it on the path to growth. These numbers indicate that the Fed might be reluctant to do that.