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The novel coronavirus has posed the US government with a dreadful conundrum- save the economy or save lives? It’s a chicken and egg situation. The social distancing and the resultant economic slowdown, spiking unemployment and poverty will endanger people.  Without these measures, lives will be lost due to disease and co-morbidities. This begs the question: how is the US equipped to deal with a pandemic breakout? Is there coronavirus preparedness?

The government has made the obvious choice to save lives on priority. A researched model from Imperial College London is the basis of this decision. It suggests that without stringent measures COVID-19 can potentially kill 2.2 mn Americans.

Experts from UCLA estimate that the tightening government restrictions will cause 2 mn job losses and raise the national unemployment rate to more than 5%. This is if social distancing measures are not needed well into the year. 

Emerging Unemployment Crisis In The United States: What Coronavirus Is Doing To The US Economy

The world remembers the 2008 Global Financial Crisis that began in the United States. That crisis began with the banking sector due to bad mortgages. The Coronavirus effects on the economic slowdown are from many economic sectors simultaneously, like travel, tourism, restaurants, movie theatres etc. shutting down. 

Here are some of the sectors shutting down and the ripple effects they will have across the economy:

  • Detroit automakers are temporarily shuttering production to try to contain the spread of coronavirus. Millions of workers and parts suppliers not to mention sales professionals will be affected.
  • New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Connecticut are temporarily closing all indoor shopping malls, amusement parks, and bowling alleys. These entertainment centers employ thousands of employees earning hourly wages.
  • The capital markets are in jeopardy with fluctuations in all the indices. The Federal Reserve has slashed interest rates to zero.
  • Many eateries and restaurants have been forced to shut down.
  • The real estate sector is seeing trickle-down effects as people save funds for emergencies (and buying houses is not one). Similarly, the tech devices companies will also see effects soon.
  • Delayed shipments from China jeopardize many consumer goods companies.
  • By contrast, supermarkets and food processing industries might see a brief revenue spike. It is however unlikely to last as people will stop having cash to spend over time.

There has been a huge jump in the number of claims filed for unemployment insurance, reflecting the increasing number of layoffs. 

  • Rhode Island alone has 17,779 claims for unemployment insurance over just 8 days.
  • Oregon has had a jump from 800 on March 16 to nearly 19000 on March 18.
  • Texas saw more than 16,000 people filing for unemployment insurance between March 10 and 16.
  • Hawaii’s state labor department website crashed due to over 3000 claims being filed on a single day, March 18.
  • 30,000+ claims have been filed in Connecticut since 13th March.

Typically the number of claims filed on an average in a week number about 4000 in normal times.

The full extent of the pandemic is yet to make itself clear.

Preparedness Of The States To Meet The Financial Requirements Of UI

An important concern is whether the states have adequate funds to pay out the unemployment insurance benefits. This is reflected in the solvency of the states’ trust funds. What does this mean?

Solvency refers to the ability of an entity, the State Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund in this case, to meet its long-term financial liabilities. To understand whether the states’ funds are solvent, we look not at the dollar amount but at the ratio of the fund balance to the wages paid out that year, called Reserve Ratio.

Consider this graph sourced from the US Department Of Labor which ranks the states on the State Trust Fund Solvency. It is worrisome to see States like California, Texas and New York in the red. They host some of the largest employers.

Only 31 out of the 50 states have funds that are at or above the recommended amounts for solvency. One reason why so many states are underprepared may be that there are no federal requirements for any minimum amount of funds that should be maintained in a state’s trust fund.

states fund solvency

If states use up all of their funds on UI payments, they can pay out pending claims by borrowing from the Federal government through the Title XII program. They will have to pay interest on these borrowings, which they may finance through private sector borrowing instruments or through tax revenue deductions by the Treasury Department.

The aid package being planned will not be meant to finance UI alone. If the global production stoppages continue for months, it is unclear how unemployment insurance payments will be extended beyond the usual 26 week period. Not all states will qualify for the extension of an additional 26 weeks.

Can The Proposed Aid Package Spur Coronavirus Preparedness?

Lawmakers are weighing a $1 trillion assistance package to small businesses, to keep them afloat during the coronavirus outbreak. The aid will likely have preconditions as measures to force bailed out companies to keep workers on their payrolls. These may include limits on executive compensation, and prohibitions on stock buybacks which have risen to unprecedented levels in recent times.

Many states have submitted requests to the U.S. Small Business Administration for the extension of SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loans to small businesses. They are facing the brunt of the slowdown.

The President has signed into legislation The Families First Coronavirus Response Act

which gives $1 billion to the states so they can meet the administrative costs of processing unemployment insurance. This will briefly rescue those 23 states with very low UI funds even before COVID-19 hit. Read all about the new law here.

Are You Eligible For UI Benefits If You Lost Your Job Due To Coronavirus?

To help the newly unemployed, the U.S. Department Of Labor has announced unemployment benefits to those who lost their jobs temporarily. However, having understood the state of emergency, the authorities have eased the eligibility criteria. Know the updated rules of UI benefits before filing a claim. 

Most states have passed executive orders exempting people from the work search requirements. The waiting period of a week to receive the first payment has also been waived. Even part-timers and the self-employed are now eligible, as are those forced to remain away from work due to illness or caregiving duties.

Despite the eased rules, those who haven’t met the minimum number of hours of work, or those who haven’t worked in a specific state long enough may find their application rejected. Those ineligible for UI but eligible for Disability Insurance or Family Leave should certainly apply for those.

What Is The Likely Future And How Much Coronavirus Preparedness Do We Need?

More easing of UI norms will be needed along with longer payment periods to support the larger numbers of unemployed citizens.

So far, the government safety net to help the unemployed does not appear sufficient to handle the surge in the claim numbers. Labor websites have been crashing across the states and phone lines have been jammed. The departments find themselves woefully understaffed as some states have recalled retirees and temporarily hired staffers to handle the new claims.

Many employees are under quarantine leading to calls going unanswered.

The Families First Coronavirus response Act is a good start but a more robust response is needed for coronavirus preparedness. It only provides relief to employers with less than 500 employees, and their employees, not addressing bigger employers or groups like students and gig workers who move around a lot.

There is little doubt that coronavirus has taken the world by storm. With West Virginia reporting a confirmed case, all 50 states in the United States are now affected by the coronavirus pandemic. The deadly virus is not only leading to the shutdown of the states and assaulting the U.S. economy but also is increasing the unemployment rate. For those losing employment through no fault of their own, filing for UI benefits can be an effective way to overcome the unexpected financial crisis.

Amid the outbreak of coronavirus, many states have eased the unemployment benefits criteria and are offering immediate financial relief to those who have lost employment owing to the COVID-19 pandemic impacts such as travel restrictions, project cancelation, temporary shutdown of social gathering places, etc.

In this article, we will have a detailed look at the number of COVID-19 cases in popular states, the unemployment rate, and the unemployment benefits (UI) offered.

STATESCONFIRMED COVID-19 CASESUNEMPLOYMENT RATE 2020UI BENEFITS (MAX/WEEK)
Florida6,741$275
Michigan7,6153.8$363
California8,5483.9$450
New Jersey18,6963.8$696
Illinois5,9943.5$648
Nevada1,1133.6$426
Ohio2,1994.1$598
New York75,9833.8$435
North Carolina1,5363.6$350
Pennsylvania4,9614.7$561
Oregon6903.3$538
Washington5,4823.9$713
Connecticut3,1283.7$688
Kentucky5914.3$502
Virginia1,25067$378
Georgia4,1173.1$330
Minnesota6293.2$740
Maryland1,6603.3$430
Massachusetts6,6202.8$1153
Indiana2,1593.1$390
Colorado2,9662.5$573
Louisiana5,2375.3$284
Tennessee2,3893.3$275
New Hampshire3672.6$427
Missouri1,3273.5$320
Iowa4972.8$559
Wisconsin1,3513.5$370
Oklahoma5653.3$520
Alabama9932.7$265
Utah8872.5$543
Arizona1,2894.5$240
South Carolina1,0832.4$326
Rhode Island4883.4$707
Arkansas5233.5$451
Hawaii2242.7$630
Kansas4283.1$474
Maine3033.1$667
Idaho5252.8$414
West Virginia1625.0$424
Montana1983.5$518
Nebraska1772.9$414
Delaware3194.0$330
Vermont2932.4$466
Mississippi9375.5$235
Wyoming1203.7$489
Alaska1196.0$442
District of Columbia4955.2$444
South Dakota1083.4$390

Have you lost your employment due to coronavirus? File a claim for unemployment benefits through a hassle-free process and get benefited during this tough time.

February saw a very slight change in the number of unemployed people as compared to the previous month. It currently stands at 5.8 million. Total nonfarm payroll in February rose by 273,000. This is a notable increase as compared to January. The unemployment rate stands at 3.5%, having dropped by 0.1% from January. 

Major Ups and Downs in February

Job gains took place in the sectors of health care, social assistance, food & beverages, government sector, financial sector, and in the professional and technical and financial services verticals. 

The health care sector added 32,000 jobs. Notable job gains took place for physicians, home health care services, and hospitals.

The social assistance sector saw significant gains of 25,000 jobs, with the bulk of gains coming from individual and family services. 

53,000 jobs were added to the food and drinking places sector. 45,000 jobs were added to the government sector last month. 

The construction sector, professional and technical services sector, and the financial industry saw significant job growth in February.

Establishment Survey Data

February saw the average hourly earnings for employees on private nonfarm payroll increase by 9% to $28.52. This is a slight increase as compared to the last month. The average workweek for all employees stood at 34.4 hours, which is an increase of 0.1 % compared to last month. 

Participation in the labor force remained at 63.4%, and the number of people employed part-time due to economic reasons stood at 4.3 million. February saw 1.4 million people who were marginally attached to the workforce. 405,000 discouraged workers were present in February. 

Household Survey Data

Workers Group Unemployment Rate
Adult Men3.3 percent
Adult Women3.1 percent
Teenagers11.0 percent 
White Population3.1 percent
Black population5.8 percent 
Asian population 2.5 percent
Hispanics4.4 percent

The unemployment rate for adult men remains the same as last month. Women’s unemployment rate saw a 0.1% decrease in February. The teenage unemployment rate dropped significantly in February. 

Unemployment for the white population remains the same as last month. On the other hand, the black population’s unemployment dropped by 0.2%. There was a significant drop in the unemployment rate for the Asian population, while the Hispanic population saw a slight increase.

Final Analysis

Despite the Coronavirus outbreak, the American job market has not yet reflected a hit. February has been a good month for job seekers with the addition of 273,000 jobs. Job seekers should look at this report and feel quite hopeful as the job market is open to hiring right now. Let’s hope that it remains steady in the near future. 

 

January saw the total nonfarm payroll rise by 225,000, which is a notable increase as compared to last month. However, there was a very slight change in the unemployment rate, which currently stands at 3.6%. The unemployment rate for December was 3.5% respectively.

Major Ups and Downs in January 

The U.S Bureau of Labor and Statistics reported notable job gains in the fields of construction, healthcare, transportation, and Warehousing. Employment in the construction sector grew by 44,000, and most of the hiring took place in the residential and non-residential verticals.

The health care sector also saw a significant increase by adding 36,000 jobs in January. Notable job gains took place in the ambulatory health care services and the hospital vertical. 

Transportation and Warehousing saw an increase of 28,000 jobs in January. Significant job gains took place in the couriers’ sector and the Warehousing and storage vertical. 

The leisure and hospitality sector continued to grow, adding 36,000 jobs in January. The professional and business industry was also on an upward growth cycle sector adding 21,000 jobs in January. 

Establishment Survey Data

The average hourly earnings for January for those who were on private nonfarm payrolls grew by 7 cents and currently stands at $28.44. All individual nonfarm employees’ average workweek did not change and therefore stands at 34.3 hours in January. 

January saw a very slight change to all persons who were marginally connected to the labor force, which currently stands at 1.3 million. 

There was a very slight change in the number of people who were employed part-time for economic reasons, which stands at 4.2 million. 

Household Survey Data

Workers Group Unemployment Rate
Adult Men3.3 percent
Adult Women3.2 percent 
Teenagers12.2 percent
White Population 3.1 percent
Black Population 6.0 percent
Asian population 3.0 percent
Hispanics 4.3 percent

There was an increase in the unemployment rate as compared to last month for adult men, which currently stands at 3.3 percent. The unemployment rate for adult women remains the same as the previous month. There was a decrease of 0.6 percent for the teenage unemployment rate in January.

The white population unemployment rate decreased, by 0.1  as compared to the previous month. The black population unemployment rate rose by 0.1 percent; the Asian unemployment rate grew by 0.5 percent. The unemployment rate for the Hispanic population grew by 0.1 percent.

Final Analysis 

The construction sector added around 12,000 jobs per month last year. Whereas the healthcare sector added 361,000 jobs last year alone. There was a significant increase in the transport and Warehousing sector last year as 106,000 jobs were added. 

The professional and business services added 390,000 jobs alone last year. January has been a good month for all job seekers on the whole. With such steady growth, 2020 is sure to see more jobs being created. 

Nonfarm payroll for the month of December rose by 145,000. It is significantly less as compared to the previous month. The U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics reported no change in the unemployment rate which currently stands at 3.5%. 

Major Ups and Down in December

Job gains took place in sectors like retail trade and health care. 2019 saw an increase in the payroll by 2.1 million. The retail trade sector added 41,000 jobs respectively in December. Retail verticals that saw an increase in jobs were clothing & accessory stores, building material, and garden supply stores.

The health care sector added 28,000 Jobs in December. The Ambulatory health care services sector added over 23,000 jobs alone. In total, the health care sector added 399,000 jobs in 2019.

The leisure and hospitality industry saw a continued upward trend in December adding 28,000 jobs respectively. The leisure and hospitality industry added 388,000 jobs in 2019. 

The Mining industry saw a decline of 8,000 jobs in December. 2019 saw a decline of 24,000 jobs in the mining industry.

Employment in the construction sector changed very little in December adding 20,000 jobs. Though 2019 did see an increase in the construction sector by adding 151,000 jobs. 

10,000 jobs were added in the professional and business services sector. The industry saw the addition of 397,000 jobs in 2019.

The manufacturing sector saw very little change in jobs as compared to the previous month. On the whole, the sector added 46,000 jobs in 2019. 

Establishment Survey Data 

December saw the average hourly earnings for all nonfarm private employees rise by 3 cents to $28.32. The last year saw the average hourly earnings increased by 2.9 %. The average workweek for all employees stood unchanged at 34.3 hours for the month of December. 

The average workweek and overtime for the manufacturing sector stood unchanged at 40.5 hours and 3.2 hours in December. 

December saw 1.2 million people who were marginally attached to the labor workforce. The number of discouraged workers was 277,000 in December. Among the workers employed part-time for economic reasons stood at 4.1 million which changed little in December. 

Household Survey Data 

Workers GroupUnemployment Rate
Adult Men3.1 percent
Adult Women 3.2 percent
Teenagers12.6 percent

 

Workers Group Unemployment Rate
White population 3.2
Black population 5.9
Asian population 2.5
Hispanics 4.2

The unemployment rate for adult men decreased by 0.1% as compared to the last year. The unemployment rate for adult women remains the same as the previous month. The teenager unemployment rate went up by .6%

The unemployment rate for the white population remains the same as the previous month. On the other hand, the black population unemployment rate went up by 0.4%. The Asian unemployment rate dropped by 0.1% The unemployment rate for Hispanics remains the same as compared to the previous month. 

Final Analysis 

The retail trade and healthcare saw positive job gains for the month of December. Its been a good month for job seekers on the whole with the nonfarm payroll increasing. Also, the last year saw a lot of jobs being created in several new sectors and the unemployment rate dropping to 3.5%. 

The November employment report states that the total nonfarm payroll increased by 266,000. In comparison to October, the nonfarm pay has seen a significant increase. There is a slight change in the unemployment rate, which currently stands at 3.5%, according to the U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Major Ups and Downs in November

Significant job gains took place in the health care industry, professional, and technical services industry. The manufacturing sector saw a rise in employment after numerous workers returned from the GM strike. The industry saw an overall gain of 54,000 jobs in November. 

The healthcare sector added 45,000 jobs, which is a considerable increase as compared to October. October just added 12,000 jobs. The hospitality and leisure vertical added 45,000 jobs, whereas the professional and business service added 31,000 jobs, respectively, in November. 

Employment in the warehousing sector saw an upward growth adding 16,000 jobs, respectively. The financial industry also added 13,000 jobs with an increase of 7,000 in credit intermediation and other related activities. 

The mining industry lost 19,000 jobs after it perked up in May. The losses in jobs occurred primarily due to not a strong support in mining activities across the country. Sectors like construction, and wholesale trade, saw no change in the employment rate.

Establishment Survey Data 

The number of people who were employed part-time stands at 4.3 million and saw a very slight change in November. November also saw 1.2 people million people marginally attached to the workforce. The number of discouraged workers stood at 325,000, which is down by 128,000 from the previous year. 

The average hourly earnings for all employees spiked up by 7% to $28.98. The past twelve months saw an increase in the average hourly earnings, which stands at 3.1%. November saw no change in the average workweek, which currently stands at 34.4 hours, respectively. 

Household Survey Data

The Unemployment rate for the various worker groups in November stands at:

Workers Group Unemployment Rate
Adult Men3.2 percent
Adult Women3.2 percent
Teenagers12.0 Percent

 

Workers Group Unemployment Rate
White population3.2 percent
Black population 5.5 percent
Asian population 2.6 percent
Hispanics 4.2 percent

The Unemployment rate is currently the same for adult men & women as the previous month. The teenage unemployment rate dropped to 12% in November. 

The white population unemployment rate is the same as the previous month. The black population unemployment rate went a notch up and currently stands at 5.5%. The Asian unemployment rate dropped to 2.6 % as compared to the previous year. The Hispanic unemployment rate went up and stands at 4.2% currently.

Final Analysis

The job report for November is definitely on the bright side. The unemployment rate dropped to 3.5%, and the nonfarm payroll increased by 266,000. 

Significant job gains were recorded in verticals like the health care industry, professional, and technical services industry. All in all, November has been a great month for job seekers and professionals. 

 

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there was a slight change in the October unemployment rate which currently stands at 3.6 percent. October saw a pick up in monthly earnings which rose to 0.1% and saw a yearly gain of 3%.

Major Ups and Downs in October 

Nonfarm payroll for the month of October stands at 128,000. In comparison to the month of September, the October nonfarm payroll is far behind. Important job gains occurred in the fields of food services, bars, social support, and the financial sector. The food sector and bars added a total of 48,000 jobs. A huge improvement has taken place in the food and bar industry. The last three months averaged just 38,000 jobs in the food and bar sector.

October saw an increase in average hourly earnings by 6 cents to $28.18. The average workweek for employees in October remained unchanged at 34.4 hours in October. 

Due to the activity caused by General Motors (GM) strike, motor vehicle companies saw a decrease in hiring activity. Economists anticipated a job loss of 50,000 or more but only 42,000 job losses were reported due to the strike.

Establishment Survey Data

Employment in the federal government reduced to 17,000, which in the long run may reduce the number of temporary jobs in 2020. The unemployment rate for African Americans hit a record low of 5.4%. For Asians workers, the unemployment rate jumped up by 0.4 percentage points to 2.9%. 

Employment in the healthcare industry saw an upward trend in the month of October adding 15,000 jobs. 402,000 jobs were added in the healthcare industry over the past 12 months. 

The number of people who were employed on a part-time basis currently stands at 4.4 million and saw little change. The month of October also saw 1.2 million people partially attached to the labor force. Which is down by 262,000 from last year. October saw a reduced number of discouraged workers at 341,000, which is down by 165,000 from the previous year. 

House Hold Survey Data

The Unemployment rate for major worker groups in the U.S stands at: 

Workers Group Unemployment Rates
Adult Men 3.2 percent
Adult Women 3.2 percent
Teenagers12.3 percent

 

Workers Group Unemployment Rates
White population 3.2 percent
Black population 5.4 percent
Asian population 2.9 percent
Hispanics 4.1 percent

The unemployment rate stands the same as the last month for adult men. The unemployment rate for adult women has gone up by point one percent. Whereas teenage unemployment rate has decreased by .2 %. 

The unemployment rate stands the same for the white population as compared to last month. On the other hand, It has touched a record low of 5.4% for the black population. Also, there was a slight spike in the unemployment rate for the Asian and Hispanic populations.

Final Analysis

The October job report has several positive aspects to it. Even though the unemployment rate went up slightly to 3.6%, it is still very close to the lowest rate in 50 years. The long term unemployed remain unchanged at 1.3 million which accounted for 21.5 percent of the unemployed. 

Professional and business services saw an upward trend adding 22,000 jobs in the month of October. Other industries like mining, construction, wholesale trade, retail trade, transportation, warehousing, and information showed a very slight change in October.

 

 

As per the employment situation report for September, the unemployment rate is reduced by 0.2 percentage points to reach 3.5 percent. With this, the unemployment rate is said to have reached a 50-year low, matching the figures of December 1969.

Major Ups and Downs in September

The unemployment rate has remained below 4 percent for the 19th month in a row. The unemployment rate stands at a 50-year low, which highlights further strengthening of the labor market in the United States.

The month of September has witnessed positive changes in job creation, where the total non-farm payrolls rose by 136,000. However, this figure is considerably lesser compared to the month-on-month for 2019, which stands at 161,000. It is also lower than the overall average for 2018, which stood at 223,000. 

The total payroll for July and August has been revised, and where the total payroll increase for these months is increased to 159,000 and 168,000 respectively. In comparison to these months, it is evident that the payroll increase for September is low.

One of the positive indicators for the month of September is that the rate of discouraged workers has come down by 0.3 percent points, matching the 19-year low record. It is also just 0.1 percent away from matching the all-time low figure of 6.8 percent.

In spite of the drop in the unemployment rate, there are other important concerns that are reflected in the report published by the employment situation report for September published by Bureau of Labor Statistics. One of the main issues highlighted in the report is that on wage growth. Over the last 12 months, wages have increased by 2.9 percent, which is the lowest since July 2018.

The reducing rate of job creation and low growth of wages will still remain to be a matter of concern in spite of the drop in the unemployment rate.

Establishment Survey Data

The payroll growth is below average for the month of September (136,000), which is lesser than the forecast made by experts (145,000). Sectors that have performed well in the month are health care and in professional and business services, which have added a major chunk of jobs.

The Health Care sector has added 39,000 jobs in September, which is in line with its average monthly gain for the last 12 months. The Professional and Business Services sector, on the other hand, has added 34,000 jobs in the month, which is marginally lesser than its monthly average for 2019, which stands at 35,000. 

Other sectors such as Transportation and Warehousing and Government sectors too have seen an upward trend in September, with each sector adding 16,000 and 22,000 jobs respectively. 

The sector with most job loss for September is Retail Trade, which has recorded a payroll loss of 11,000 for September. The report states that since its peak in 2017, the sector has lost nearly 197,000 jobs.

Sectors such as Mining, Construction, Manufacturing, Wholesale Trade, Information, Financial Activities, and Leisure and Hospitality have seen little to no change in its performance for the month.

Household Survey Data

The unemployment rate has come down marginally for most of the major worker groups. The unemployment rate for major worker groups stands at:

Workers GroupsUnemployment Rates
Adult Men3.2 percent
Adult Women3.1 percent
Teenagers12.5 percent

 

Workers GroupsUnemployment Rates
White population3.2 percent
Black population5.5 percent
Hispanic population3.9 percent
Asian population2.5 percent

The unemployment rate has come down for marginally for adult men, women and teenagers. Among the racial groups, unemployment rate Hispanics have seen a reasonable improvement, which has come down for 4.2 percent to 3.9 percent. The unemployment rate has come down for the Asian population as well, but there has been no change in the rate for the black population.

Final Analysis

There have been some very positive improvements in the employment situation for the month of September. The unemployment rate has reached a 50-year low, and there has been an increase in the new entrants in the job market. The job market has also witnessed a decline in the number of job losers and persons who completed temporary jobs. 

These developments mark a positive trend, but there are some challenges too that need to be addressed. Issues such as low wage growth and low growth of payroll are considerably important issues that need to be addressed at the earliest.

 

Key Points:

  •  Total nonfarm payroll employment in August rose by 130,000. The rise in June was 178,000
  •  Increase in the average hourly earnings to 0.4 percent in August  from 0.3 percent in July
  • The labor participation rate has risen from 63 percent in July to 63.2 percent in August

 

The employment situation for August shows that the rate of unemployment remains unchanged at 3.7 percent. The report for August contains a mixed bag of results, where some indicators have seen a slump, whereas others have seen a promising rise. 

Major Ups and Downs in August

The total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 130,000. This is less than the revised average of 156,000 per month for the last three months. The job growth rate for the month has been poorer than in the previous months.

The data for June and July, although indicate higher growth than August, has been revised from the previously acknowledged figures. The payroll growth for the month of June has been revised from 193,000 to 178,000, and the payroll increase for July has been revised from 164,000 to 159,000 as per the Bureau of Labor Statistics

The payroll growth for August has been considerably lesser than the rise witnessed in June and July, and this indicates a major slowdown in job creation for the month of August.

The challenges faced in August was not helped by the fact that, apart from the federal hiring, private payroll only grew by 96,000. This is considered to be the slowest pace of growth since February 2019. Also, the rise in federal hiring is largely due to the hiring of temporary workers for the 2020 survey. 

On the positive side, the month of August has also witnessed an increase in the average hourly earnings, which rose to 0.4 percent from 0.3 percent in July. Also, the labor participation rate has seen a marginal rise from 63 percent to 63.2 percent

Establishment Survey Data

The payroll growth (130,000) in August has been less than the average growth recorded so far in 2019, which stands at 158,000. The slump appears to be greater when compared to the overall average of the year 2018, which stood at 223,000.

There was an increase in private-sector employment by 96,000 with notable gains made in the healthcare sector and the financial sector. The public-sector employment rose by 28,000, largely due to the recruitment of 25,000 temporary employees for 2020 census work.

The health care sector has added 24,000 jobs in August, taking the value for the last 12 months to 392,000. The financial sector too added 15,000 jobs for the month, taking its 12-month tally to 111,000. Other sectors that added jobs in August include the professional and business services sector, social assistance, and mining.

Sectors that changed little to none in August include construction, manufacturing, transportation

and warehousing, and leisure and hospitality. The retail sector, on the other hand, lost about 15,000 jobs in the month.

Household Survey Data

There are no major changes in the unemployment rate of the major worker groups. The unemployment rate for major worker groups stands at:

Workers GroupsUnemployment Rates
Adult Men3.4 percent
Adult Women3.3 percent
Teenagers12.6 percent
White population3.4 percent
Black population5.5 percent
Hispanic population4.2 percent
Asian population2.8 percent

According to the data from August, the unemployment for ‘adult women’, ‘teenagers’, ‘Black population’ and ‘Hispanic population’ has seen a marginal decrease in the rate of unemployment. 

The rate of labor force participation and the employment-population ratio has seen a marginal increase in August. Labor participation rate 63.2 percent, while the employment-population ratio also went up to 60.9 percent in August. 

Final Analysis

The rate of job growth has considerably slowed down. Experts point out that the disagreements in trade deals between the United States and China could be one of the important reasons for the slump the US is facing in job creation. 

However, the increasing wage rate and labor participation rate indicates a positive sign. It shows that people may make more money per hour than the earlier weeks and that more and more people are entering the job market. 

  

The employment situation for the month of July has seen little changes from the previous month. The unemployment rate remains at 3.7 percent in July, indicating that the rate remains unchanged.

The job growth, however, has not increased in comparison to the previous month. The important news to emerge from the ‘Employment Situation Report- July 2019’ is that the job growth numbers given for May and June have been revised. The total payroll gain is reported to be 41,000 less than that was previously reported for May and June combined.

The payroll increase for May is revised to 62,000 from the earlier reported figure of 72,000. The increase for the month of June is revised to 193,000 from the previously reported 224,000.

The nonfarm payroll jobs increase reported for the month of July is 164,000. The figure is lower than the newly revised figure of the previous month.

Establishment Survey Data

The job gain in July is in line with the average employment growth in the first six months of 2019. Some of the notable contributors in creating jobs for July are professional and technical services, health care, social assistance, and financial activities.

Professional and technical services added nearly 31,000 jobs for the month of July. This also takes the yearly average of the sector to 300,000, which accounts for one-third of all jobs created in the last year.

The jobs created by the healthcare sector for July is 30,000 for the month of July. The total jobs added by the health care sector over the year is about 405,000, which accounts for nearly two-thirds of all jobs created.

The jobs added by social assistance and financial activities sectors are 20,000 and 18,000 respectively in the month of July.

The average workweek for all workers has come down by 0.1 hours, standing at 34.3 hours in July. This decline has been steeper in the manufacturing sector, which registered a decline of 0.3 hours, standing at 40.4 hours.

The wage rate has seen a rise in July, keeping up with the rate that was recorded in the previous month. The average hourly earnings have increased by 8 cents, standing at $27.98. The rise in the previous month too was 8 cents, thus indicating that the rate of wage growth has not seen much difference in July.

Household Survey Data

The ‘major worker groups’ have not seen big changes in the rate of unemployment as compared to the previous month. The unemployment rate of the major workers’ groups for the month of June are:

Workers GroupsUnemployment Rates
Adult Men3.4 percent
Adult Women3.4 percent
Teenagers12.8 percent
White population3.3 percent
Black population6.0 percent
Hispanic population4.5 percent
Asian population2.8 percent

As per the data presented in July, there has been a marginal increase in the unemployment rate of adult men, women and teenagers. In the case of racial groups, there has been a marginal increase in the rate of unemployment for the Hispanic population. The only considerable difference appears in the rate of unemployment of the Asian population, which has come down to 2.8 percent from 2.1 percent in the previous month.

Final Analysis

Although the number of jobs created in July is lesser than the rate of growth in June and May, the overall growth rate seems stable. There has also been an increase in wages, which although is marginal, is a positive sign.

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