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The Employment Situation – February 2020

Updated : August 4th, 2020

The Employment Situation February 2020

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 Men 3.3 percent
Adult Women 3.1 percent
Teenagers 11.0 percent 
White Population 3.1 percent
Black population 5.8 percent 
Asian population  2.5 percent
Hispanics 4.4 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. 


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  1. I lived in ga in 2019 and move to florida in 2020 and work for the xmas months in nov-dec. I was told to do a combine wage claim. my question is which state do i file the claim in?

  2. I filed for pua in Ohio back in October 2020.My claim has been in ajudacatuon since 11/1/20.So 2 to 6 weeks is a total understatement! When I call.i am told to basically hurry up and wait some more.I have recently been redetermined and my claim is allowed.but I have one pending issue.How long is too long?

    1. Nicole,

      Unfortunately, nobody has an answer. There are perhaps thousands of pending applications. Please consider the option of visiting an office in the vicinity if safe and feasible.

  3. If you claim your weeks for unemployment and for the next 2 months you still have not received your money. Where can you go in volusia county to talk with a live person

  4. On NYS DOL website, my claim is saying current yet the information is for my old claim with 0 days remaining despite receiving 2 weeks of payments on the new claim and I was able to certify last night. I haven’t received anything; no letters or emails.

  5. I was disqualified for UI benefits for not providing an ID and other forms of identification. How do I fix this?

    1. Hi Mike, I’m in NYS and was at the end of my BYE on 3/14, I was still certifying but wasn’t getting paid. I found out I had to file a new claim because my other was exhausted. I’m still waiting on approval. Maybe you have to file a new claim. I hope this helps.

  6. They say 2-6 weeks it’s more accurate to say 2-6 months; and when you call many of them are rude and unwilling to assist!

  7. someone needs to look into Sharon L. Anton gillette, wyo. or dickinson, nd she is a fraud and has done so many fraudulent things and please look into her

    1. Annette,

      Please report it to the Fraud Division of the Unemployment Office in your state. You can report on the website.

  8. I worked part time for thee years here in florida. I’m currently not working. I’m also retired and collects social security.
    My question is
    Am I qualified to file for unemployment ?

    1. Ruby,

      To be eligible, you’re required to have sufficient hours and earnings. Please use the “Benefits Calculator” available on this website.

  9. So adjudication takes 8 to 12 weeks. Oh okay, that explains why I havent received payment since July. That surely helps just like the rest of the information that you give. And by the way. What’s the NEW reason you can’t get through to the Call Center.

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