Advance copies of this statement are made available to the press
under lock-up conditions with the explicit understanding that
the data are embargoed until 8:30 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time.
William J. Wiatrowski
Bureau of Labor Statistics
Friday, October 5, 2018
The unemployment rate declined to 3.7 percent in September,
and nonfarm payroll employment increased by 134,000. Job gains
occurred in professional and business services, in health care,
and in transportation and warehousing.
Incorporating revisions for July and August, which
increased nonfarm payroll employment by 87,000, monthly job
gains have averaged 190,000 over the past 3 months.
Hurricane Florence made landfall on the East Coast on
September 14--during the reference period for both the
establishment and household surveys--causing large-scale
evacuations and severe damage to many homes and businesses.
Response rates for the two surveys were within normal ranges. It
is possible that payroll employment in some industries was
affected by the hurricane; however, it is not possible to
quantify the net effect on employment.
In September, employment in professional and business
services increased by 54,000. Over the year, employment in the
industry rose by 560,000.
Health care added 26,000 jobs in September, with a gain of
12,000 jobs in hospitals. Over the year, employment in health
care has increased by 302,000.
In September, transportation and warehousing added 24,000
jobs. Job gains occurred in warehousing and storage (+8,000) and
couriers and messengers (+5,000). Transportation and warehousing
has added 174,000 jobs over the year.
Employment in construction continued to trend up in
September (+23,000). Over the year, construction employment has
increased by 315,000.
Employment in manufacturing also continued to trend up in
September (+18,000), with a gain of 17,000 in durable goods.
Over the year, manufacturing has added 278,000 jobs, most of
which were in the durable goods component.
Within mining, support activities for mining added 6,000
jobs in September.
Employment in leisure and hospitality was little changed
over the month (-17,000). Prior to September, employment in the
industry had been on a modest upward trend. Some of the weakness
in this industry in September may reflect the impact of
Employment in other major industries--including wholesale
trade, retail trade, information, financial activities, and
government--showed little or no change over the month.
Average hourly earnings of all employees on private nonfarm
payrolls increased by 8 cents in September to $27.24. Over the
past 12 months, average hourly earnings have risen by 2.8
percent. From August 2017 to August 2018, the Consumer Price
Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) increased by 2.7 percent
(on a seasonally adjusted basis).
Turning to measures from the survey of households, the
unemployment rate declined by 0.2 percentage point to 3.7
percent in September. The number of unemployed people fell by
270,000 to 6.0 million, largely among adult women. Over the
year, the number of unemployed people declined by 795,000, and
the unemployment rate decreased by 0.5 percentage point.
Among the unemployed, the number of people searching for
work for 27 weeks or more was little changed at 1.4 million in
September. These long-term unemployed accounted for 22.9 percent
of the unemployed.
The labor force participation rate held at 62.7 percent in
September, and the employment-population ratio, at 60.4 percent,
was little changed.
In September, there were 4.6 million people working part
time for economic reasons (also referred to as involuntary part-
time workers). Although this measure was up by 263,000 over the
month, it has been trending down over the year and is 506,000
lower than a year ago.
Among those neither working nor looking for work in
September, 1.6 million were considered marginally attached to
the labor force, essentially unchanged from a year earlier.
Discouraged workers, a subset of the marginally attached who
believed that no jobs were available for them, numbered 383,000
in September, also about unchanged from a year earlier.
(Marginally attached to the labor force refers to people who had
not looked for work in the 4 weeks prior to the survey but
wanted a job, were available for work, and had looked for a job
within the last 12 months.)
In summary, the unemployment rate declined to 3.7 percent
in September, and nonfarm payroll employment increased by