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Employment up 1.4 million in August 2020 but still down 11.5 million since February

September 09, 2020

Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 1.4 million in August 2020, following larger increases in the prior 3 months. In August, nonfarm employment was below its February level by 11.5 million, or 7.6 percent.

Nonfarm payroll employment, January 1990–August 2020
Month Employment level Over-the-month change

Jan 1990

109,199,000 363,000

Feb 1990

109,435,000 236,000

Mar 1990

109,644,000 209,000

Apr 1990

109,686,000 42,000

May 1990

109,839,000 153,000

Jun 1990

109,856,000 17,000

Jul 1990

109,824,000 -32,000

Aug 1990

109,616,000 -208,000

Sep 1990

109,518,000 -98,000

Oct 1990

109,367,000 -151,000

Nov 1990

109,214,000 -153,000

Dec 1990

109,166,000 -48,000

Jan 1991

109,055,000 -111,000

Feb 1991

108,734,000 -321,000

Mar 1991

108,574,000 -160,000

Apr 1991

108,364,000 -210,000

May 1991

108,249,000 -115,000

Jun 1991

108,334,000 85,000

Jul 1991

108,292,000 -42,000

Aug 1991

108,310,000 18,000

Sep 1991

108,336,000 26,000

Oct 1991

108,357,000 21,000

Nov 1991

108,296,000 -61,000

Dec 1991

108,328,000 32,000

Jan 1992

108,369,000 41,000

Feb 1992

108,311,000 -58,000

Mar 1992

108,365,000 54,000

Apr 1992

108,519,000 154,000

May 1992

108,649,000 130,000

Jun 1992

108,715,000 66,000

Jul 1992

108,793,000 78,000

Aug 1992

108,925,000 132,000

Sep 1992

108,959,000 34,000

Oct 1992

109,139,000 180,000

Nov 1992

109,272,000 133,000

Dec 1992

109,495,000 223,000

Jan 1993

109,794,000 299,000

Feb 1993

110,044,000 250,000

Mar 1993

109,994,000 -50,000

Apr 1993

110,296,000 302,000

May 1993

110,568,000 272,000

Jun 1993

110,749,000 181,000

Jul 1993

111,055,000 306,000

Aug 1993

111,206,000 151,000

Sep 1993

111,448,000 242,000

Oct 1993

111,733,000 285,000

Nov 1993

111,984,000 251,000

Dec 1993

112,314,000 330,000

Jan 1994

112,595,000 281,000

Feb 1994

112,781,000 186,000

Mar 1994

113,242,000 461,000

Apr 1994

113,586,000 344,000

May 1994

113,921,000 335,000

Jun 1994

114,238,000 317,000

Jul 1994

114,610,000 372,000

Aug 1994

114,896,000 286,000

Sep 1994

115,247,000 351,000

Oct 1994

115,458,000 211,000

Nov 1994

115,869,000 411,000

Dec 1994

116,165,000 296,000

Jan 1995

116,501,000 336,000

Feb 1995

116,697,000 196,000

Mar 1995

116,907,000 210,000

Apr 1995

117,069,000 162,000

May 1995

117,049,000 -20,000

Jun 1995

117,286,000 237,000

Jul 1995

117,380,000 94,000

Aug 1995

117,634,000 254,000

Sep 1995

117,875,000 241,000

Oct 1995

118,031,000 156,000

Nov 1995

118,175,000 144,000

Dec 1995

118,320,000 145,000

Jan 1996

118,316,000 -4,000

Feb 1996

118,739,000 423,000

Mar 1996

118,993,000 254,000

Apr 1996

119,158,000 165,000

May 1996

119,486,000 328,000

Jun 1996

119,769,000 283,000

Jul 1996

120,015,000 246,000

Aug 1996

120,199,000 184,000

Sep 1996

120,410,000 211,000

Oct 1996

120,665,000 255,000

Nov 1996

120,961,000 296,000

Dec 1996

121,143,000 182,000

Jan 1997

121,363,000 220,000

Feb 1997

121,675,000 312,000

Mar 1997

121,990,000 315,000

Apr 1997

122,286,000 296,000

May 1997

122,546,000 260,000

Jun 1997

122,814,000 268,000

Jul 1997

123,111,000 297,000

Aug 1997

123,093,000 -18,000

Sep 1997

123,585,000 492,000

Oct 1997

123,929,000 344,000

Nov 1997

124,235,000 306,000

Dec 1997

124,549,000 314,000

Jan 1998

124,812,000 263,000

Feb 1998

125,016,000 204,000

Mar 1998

125,164,000 148,000

Apr 1998

125,442,000 278,000

May 1998

125,844,000 402,000

Jun 1998

126,076,000 232,000

Jul 1998

126,205,000 129,000

Aug 1998

126,544,000 339,000

Sep 1998

126,752,000 208,000

Oct 1998

126,954,000 202,000

Nov 1998

127,231,000 277,000

Dec 1998

127,596,000 365,000

Jan 1999

127,702,000 106,000

Feb 1999

128,120,000 418,000

Mar 1999

128,227,000 107,000

Apr 1999

128,597,000 370,000

May 1999

128,808,000 211,000

Jun 1999

129,089,000 281,000

Jul 1999

129,414,000 325,000

Aug 1999

129,569,000 155,000

Sep 1999

129,772,000 203,000

Oct 1999

130,177,000 405,000

Nov 1999

130,466,000 289,000

Dec 1999

130,772,000 306,000

Jan 2000

131,005,000 233,000

Feb 2000

131,124,000 119,000

Mar 2000

131,596,000 472,000

Apr 2000

131,888,000 292,000

May 2000

132,105,000 217,000

Jun 2000

132,061,000 -44,000

Jul 2000

132,236,000 175,000

Aug 2000

132,230,000 -6,000

Sep 2000

132,353,000 123,000

Oct 2000

132,351,000 -2,000

Nov 2000

132,556,000 205,000

Dec 2000

132,709,000 153,000

Jan 2001

132,698,000 -11,000

Feb 2001

132,789,000 91,000

Mar 2001

132,747,000 -42,000

Apr 2001

132,463,000 -284,000

May 2001

132,410,000 -53,000

Jun 2001

132,299,000 -111,000

Jul 2001

132,177,000 -122,000

Aug 2001

132,028,000 -149,000

Sep 2001

131,771,000 -257,000

Oct 2001

131,454,000 -317,000

Nov 2001

131,142,000 -312,000

Dec 2001

130,982,000 -160,000

Jan 2002

130,852,000 -130,000

Feb 2002

130,736,000 -116,000

Mar 2002

130,717,000 -19,000

Apr 2002

130,623,000 -94,000

May 2002

130,634,000 11,000

Jun 2002

130,684,000 50,000

Jul 2002

130,590,000 -94,000

Aug 2002

130,587,000 -3,000

Sep 2002

130,501,000 -86,000

Oct 2002

130,628,000 127,000

Nov 2002

130,615,000 -13,000

Dec 2002

130,472,000 -143,000

Jan 2003

130,580,000 108,000

Feb 2003

130,444,000 -136,000

Mar 2003

130,232,000 -212,000

Apr 2003

130,177,000 -55,000

May 2003

130,196,000 19,000

Jun 2003

130,194,000 -2,000

Jul 2003

130,191,000 -3,000

Aug 2003

130,149,000 -42,000

Sep 2003

130,254,000 105,000

Oct 2003

130,454,000 200,000

Nov 2003

130,474,000 20,000

Dec 2003

130,588,000 114,000

Jan 2004

130,769,000 181,000

Feb 2004

130,825,000 56,000

Mar 2004

131,142,000 317,000

Apr 2004

131,411,000 269,000

May 2004

131,694,000 283,000

Jun 2004

131,793,000 99,000

Jul 2004

131,848,000 55,000

Aug 2004

131,937,000 89,000

Sep 2004

132,093,000 156,000

Oct 2004

132,447,000 354,000

Nov 2004

132,503,000 56,000

Dec 2004

132,624,000 121,000

Jan 2005

132,774,000 150,000

Feb 2005

133,032,000 258,000

Mar 2005

133,156,000 124,000

Apr 2005

133,518,000 362,000

May 2005

133,690,000 172,000

Jun 2005

133,942,000 252,000

Jul 2005

134,296,000 354,000

Aug 2005

134,498,000 202,000

Sep 2005

134,566,000 68,000

Oct 2005

134,655,000 89,000

Nov 2005

134,993,000 338,000

Dec 2005

135,149,000 156,000

Jan 2006

135,429,000 280,000

Feb 2006

135,737,000 308,000

Mar 2006

136,047,000 310,000

Apr 2006

136,205,000 158,000

May 2006

136,244,000 39,000

Jun 2006

136,325,000 81,000

Jul 2006

136,520,000 195,000

Aug 2006

136,694,000 174,000

Sep 2006

136,843,000 149,000

Oct 2006

136,852,000 9,000

Nov 2006

137,063,000 211,000

Dec 2006

137,249,000 186,000

Jan 2007

137,477,000 228,000

Feb 2007

137,558,000 81,000

Mar 2007

137,793,000 235,000

Apr 2007

137,842,000 49,000

May 2007

137,993,000 151,000

Jun 2007

138,069,000 76,000

Jul 2007

138,038,000 -31,000

Aug 2007

138,015,000 -23,000

Sep 2007

138,095,000 80,000

Oct 2007

138,174,000 79,000

Nov 2007

138,284,000 110,000

Dec 2007

138,392,000 108,000

Jan 2008

138,403,000 11,000

Feb 2008

138,324,000 -79,000

Mar 2008

138,275,000 -49,000

Apr 2008

138,035,000 -240,000

May 2008

137,858,000 -177,000

Jun 2008

137,687,000 -171,000

Jul 2008

137,491,000 -196,000

Aug 2008

137,213,000 -278,000

Sep 2008

136,753,000 -460,000

Oct 2008

136,272,000 -481,000

Nov 2008

135,545,000 -727,000

Dec 2008

134,839,000 -706,000

Jan 2009

134,055,000 -784,000

Feb 2009

133,312,000 -743,000

Mar 2009

132,512,000 -800,000

Apr 2009

131,817,000 -695,000

May 2009

131,475,000 -342,000

Jun 2009

131,008,000 -467,000

Jul 2009

130,668,000 -340,000

Aug 2009

130,485,000 -183,000

Sep 2009

130,244,000 -241,000

Oct 2009

130,045,000 -199,000

Nov 2009

130,057,000 12,000

Dec 2009

129,788,000 -269,000

Jan 2010

129,790,000 2,000

Feb 2010

129,698,000 -92,000

Mar 2010

129,879,000 181,000

Apr 2010

130,110,000 231,000

May 2010

130,650,000 540,000

Jun 2010

130,511,000 -139,000

Jul 2010

130,427,000 -84,000

Aug 2010

130,422,000 -5,000

Sep 2010

130,357,000 -65,000

Oct 2010

130,625,000 268,000

Nov 2010

130,750,000 125,000

Dec 2010

130,822,000 72,000

Jan 2011

130,841,000 19,000

Feb 2011

131,053,000 212,000

Mar 2011

131,288,000 235,000

Apr 2011

131,602,000 314,000

May 2011

131,703,000 101,000

Jun 2011

131,939,000 236,000

Jul 2011

131,999,000 60,000

Aug 2011

132,125,000 126,000

Sep 2011

132,358,000 233,000

Oct 2011

132,562,000 204,000

Nov 2011

132,694,000 132,000

Dec 2011

132,896,000 202,000

Jan 2012

133,250,000 354,000

Feb 2012

133,512,000 262,000

Mar 2012

133,752,000 240,000

Apr 2012

133,834,000 82,000

May 2012

133,934,000 100,000

Jun 2012

134,007,000 73,000

Jul 2012

134,159,000 152,000

Aug 2012

134,331,000 172,000

Sep 2012

134,518,000 187,000

Oct 2012

134,677,000 159,000

Nov 2012

134,833,000 156,000

Dec 2012

135,072,000 239,000

Jan 2013

135,263,000 191,000

Feb 2013

135,541,000 278,000

Mar 2013

135,680,000 139,000

Apr 2013

135,871,000 191,000

May 2013

136,093,000 222,000

Jun 2013

136,274,000 181,000

Jul 2013

136,386,000 112,000

Aug 2013

136,628,000 242,000

Sep 2013

136,815,000 187,000

Oct 2013

137,040,000 225,000

Nov 2013

137,304,000 264,000

Dec 2013

137,373,000 69,000

Jan 2014

137,548,000 175,000

Feb 2014

137,714,000 166,000

Mar 2014

137,968,000 254,000

Apr 2014

138,293,000 325,000

May 2014

138,511,000 218,000

Jun 2014

138,837,000 326,000

Jul 2014

139,069,000 232,000

Aug 2014

139,257,000 188,000

Sep 2014

139,566,000 309,000

Oct 2014

139,818,000 252,000

Nov 2014

140,109,000 291,000

Dec 2014

140,377,000 268,000

Jan 2015

140,568,000 191,000

Feb 2015

140,839,000 271,000

Mar 2015

140,910,000 71,000

Apr 2015

141,194,000 284,000

May 2015

141,525,000 331,000

Jun 2015

141,699,000 174,000

Jul 2015

142,001,000 302,000

Aug 2015

142,126,000 125,000

Sep 2015

142,281,000 155,000

Oct 2015

142,587,000 306,000

Nov 2015

142,824,000 237,000

Dec 2015

143,097,000 273,000

Jan 2016

143,170,000 73,000

Feb 2016

143,433,000 263,000

Mar 2016

143,662,000 229,000

Apr 2016

143,849,000 187,000

May 2016

143,891,000 42,000

Jun 2016

144,158,000 267,000

Jul 2016

144,512,000 354,000

Aug 2016

144,647,000 135,000

Sep 2016

144,916,000 269,000

Oct 2016

145,061,000 145,000

Nov 2016

145,212,000 151,000

Dec 2016

145,442,000 230,000

Jan 2017

145,627,000 185,000

Feb 2017

145,815,000 188,000

Mar 2017

145,944,000 129,000

Apr 2017

146,141,000 197,000

May 2017

146,296,000 155,000

Jun 2017

146,512,000 216,000

Jul 2017

146,727,000 215,000

Aug 2017

146,911,000 184,000

Sep 2017

146,929,000 18,000

Oct 2017

147,196,000 267,000

Nov 2017

147,421,000 225,000

Dec 2017

147,551,000 130,000

Jan 2018

147,672,000 121,000

Feb 2018

148,078,000 406,000

Mar 2018

148,254,000 176,000

Apr 2018

148,391,000 137,000

May 2018

148,669,000 278,000

Jun 2018

148,888,000 219,000

Jul 2018

149,024,000 136,000

Aug 2018

149,268,000 244,000

Sep 2018

149,348,000 80,000

Oct 2018

149,549,000 201,000

Nov 2018

149,683,000 134,000

Dec 2018

149,865,000 182,000

Jan 2019

150,134,000 269,000

Feb 2019

150,135,000 1,000

Mar 2019

150,282,000 147,000

Apr 2019

150,492,000 210,000

May 2019

150,577,000 85,000

Jun 2019

150,759,000 182,000

Jul 2019

150,953,000 194,000

Aug 2019

151,160,000 207,000

Sep 2019

151,368,000 208,000

Oct 2019

151,553,000 185,000

Nov 2019

151,814,000 261,000

Dec 2019

151,998,000 184,000

Jan 2020

152,212,000 214,000

Feb 2020

152,463,000 251,000

Mar 2020

151,090,000 -1,373,000

Apr 2020

130,303,000 -20,787,000

May 2020

133,028,000 2,725,000

Jun 2020

137,809,000 4,781,000

Jul 2020

139,543,000 1,734,000

Aug 2020

140,914,000 1,371,000

Note: Data for the most recent two months are preliminary.

Government employment rose in August, largely reflecting temporary hiring for the 2020 census.

Employment change by industry, August 2020, seasonally adjusted
Industry Over-the-month change

Mining and logging

-2,000

Logging

-900

Mining

-1,700

Oil and gas extraction

-1,100

Mining, except oil and gas

300

Coal mining

100

Metal ore mining

200

Nonmetallic mineral mining and quarrying

0

Support activities for mining

-900

Construction

16,000

Construction of buildings

13,400

Residential building

3,200

Nonresidential building

10,200

Heavy and civil engineering construction

-5,500

Specialty trade contractors

8,800

Residential specialty trade contractors

24,500

Nonresidential specialty trade contractors

-15,700

Manufacturing

29,000

Durable goods

2,000

Wood products

1,100

Nonmetallic mineral products

-4,400

Primary metals

-500

Fabricated metal products

5,900

Machinery

-1,300

Computer and electronic products

2,300

Computer and peripheral equipment

300

Communications equipment

300

Semiconductors and electronic components

0

Electronic instruments

1,400

Miscellaneous computer and electronic products

300

Electrical equipment and appliances

-400

Transportation equipment

-8,400

Motor vehicles and parts

-5,300

Furniture and related products

5,700

Miscellaneous durable goods manufacturing

2,000

Nondurable goods

27,000

Food manufacturing

12,100

Textile mills

-1,200

Textile product mills

1,200

Apparel

3,200

Paper and paper products

0

Printing and related support activities

-4,100

Petroleum and coal products

600

Chemicals

5,500

Plastics and rubber products

6,500

Miscellaneous nondurable goods manufacturing

3,400

Wholesale trade

13,500

Durable goods

400

Nondurable goods

8,500

Electronic markets and agents and brokers

4,600

Retail trade

248,900

Motor vehicle and parts dealers

22,300

Automobile dealers

16,800

Other motor vehicle dealers

3,000

Auto parts, accessories, and tire stores

2,500

Furniture and home furnishings stores

10,500

Electronics and appliance stores

20,800

Building material and garden supply stores

13,200

Food and beverage stores

3,800

Health and personal care stores

15,300

Gasoline stations

6,300

Clothing and clothing accessories stores

11,100

Sporting goods, hobby, book, and music stores

5,800

General merchandise stores

116,400

Department stores

32,300

General merchandise stores, including warehouse clubs and supercenters

84,100

Miscellaneous store retailers

17,200

Nonstore retailers

6,200

Transportation and warehousing

78,100

Air transportation

7,500

Rail transportation

100

Water transportation

-100

Truck transportation

10,000

Transit and ground passenger transportation

11,400

Pipeline transportation

-200

Scenic and sightseeing transportation

100

Support activities for transportation

7,200

Couriers and messengers

7,700

Warehousing and storage

34,400

Utilities

600

Information

15,000

Publishing industries, except Internet

3,300

Motion picture and sound recording industries

13,900

Broadcasting, except Internet

4,300

Telecommunications

-2,700

Data processing, hosting and related services

-3,200

Other information services

0

Financial activities

36,000

Finance and insurance

12,900

Monetary authorities - central bank

0

Credit intermediation and related activities

8,900

Depository credit intermediation

-1,800

Commercial banking

-1,400

Nondepository credit intermediation

10,000

Activities related to credit intermediation

700

Securities, commodity contracts, investments, and funds and trusts

900

Insurance carriers and related activities

3,100

Real estate and rental and leasing

23,100

Real estate

14,900

Rental and leasing services

8,100

Lessors of nonfinancial intangible assets

100

Professional and business services

197,000

Professional and technical services

41,700

Legal services

0

Accounting and bookkeeping services

-1,600

Architectural and engineering services

14,400

Specialized design services

600

Computer systems design and related services

12,800

Management and technical consulting services

5,300

Scientific research and development services

9,600

Advertising and related services

-1,900

Other professional and technical services

2,500

Management of companies and enterprises

4,100

Administrative and waste services

151,200

Administrative and support services

150,800

Office administrative services

800

Facilities support services

-2,500

Employment services

126,300

Temporary help services

106,700

Business support services

13,300

Travel arrangement and reservation services

-2,900

Investigation and security services

5,400

Services to buildings and dwellings

5,100

Other support services

5,300

Waste management and remediation services

400

Education and health services

147,000

Educational services

56,900

Health care and social assistance

90,100

Health care

75,300

Ambulatory health care services

75,000

Offices of physicians

26,500

Offices of dentists

21,600

Offices of other health practitioners

10,600

Outpatient care centers

2,400

Medical and diagnostic laboratories

300

Home health care services

11,600

Other ambulatory health care services

2,000

Hospitals

14,000

Nursing and residential care facilities

-13,700

Nursing care facilities

-7,700

Residential mental health facilities

3,200

Community care facilities for the elderly

-7,900

Other residential care facilities

-1,300

Social assistance

14,800

Individual and family services

11,300

Emergency and other relief services

-2,000

Vocational rehabilitation services

6,100

Child day care services

-600

Leisure and hospitality

174,000

Arts, entertainment, and recreation

25,100

Performing arts and spectator sports

19,100

Museums, historical sites, and similar institutions

2,300

Amusements, gambling, and recreation

3,700

Accommodation and food services

149,000

Accommodation

15,400

Food services and drinking places

133,600

Other services

74,000

Repair and maintenance

28,700

Personal and laundry services

13,900

Membership associations and organizations

30,800

Government

344,000

Federal

251,000

Federal, except U.S. Postal Service

246,700

U.S. Postal Service

4,200

State government

-2,000

State government education

-3,900

State government, excluding education

2,000

Local government

95,000

Local government education

31,700

Local government, excluding education

63,300

Note: Data for the most recent two months are preliminary.

Notable job gains also occurred in retail trade, in professional and business services, in leisure and hospitality, and in education and health services.

These data are from the Current Employment Statistics program. Data for the most recent 2 months are preliminary. To learn more, see "The Employment Situation — August 2020" and the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the August data. Also see more charts on employment, hours, and earnings data.

SUGGESTED CITATION

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Employment up 1.4 million in August 2020 but still down 11.5 million since February on the Internet at https://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2020/employment-up-1-point-4-million-in-august-2020-but-still-down-11-point-5-million-since-february.htm (visited September 18, 2020).

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