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April 13, 2023
The US Department of Labor reported a total of 235,000 new jobs in August, significantly below economists’ predictions of 720,000.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported, “Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 235,000 in August, and the unemployment rate declined by 0.2 percentage point to 5.2 percent. So far this year, monthly job growth has averaged 586,000.”
“In August, notable job gains occurred in professional and business services, transportation and warehousing, private education, manufacturing, and other services. Employment in retail trade declined over the month.” The lack of labor despite open positions has been connected to Americans turning down jobs to remain unemployed following COVID-19 induced lockdowns.
In contrast, July’s report added 943,000 jobs, subsequently bringing the unemployment rate down to 5.4 percent. The uptick in employment and openings outpaced analyst’s predictions and provided a positive outlook for the economy.
“If the pace of hiring over the last three months continues, all jobs lost due to the pandemic would be regained in seven months,” Leslie Preston, senior economist at TD Economics, wrote in a research report. “However, the pace is likely to cool a bit and the risk of the delta variant looms.’’
Last month, the Labor Department collected data for its July report prior to updated COVID-19 recommendations by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which succeeded the ongoing national surge in Delta variant cases. August’s slow down is possibly a reflection of both reignited virus fears and reliance on social security.
ARTICLE: ANTOINETTE AHO
MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
PHOTO CREDITS: FORTUNE