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The Employment Situation – October 2019

The Employment Situation-October 2019

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
Teenagers 12.3 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.


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