Employment Situation Summary

Transmission of material in this release is embargoed until           USDL-16-1096
8:30 a.m. (EDT) Friday, June 3, 2016

Technical information:
 Household data:       (202) 691-6378  *  cpsinfo@bls.gov  *  www.bls.gov/cps
 Establishment data:   (202) 691-6555  *  cesinfo@bls.gov  *  www.bls.gov/ces

Media contact:         (202) 691-5902  *  PressOffice@bls.gov

                         THE EMPLOYMENT SITUATION -- MAY 2016

The unemployment rate declined by 0.3 percentage point to 4.7 percent in May, and 
nonfarm payroll employment changed little (+38,000), the U.S. Bureau of Labor 
Statistics reported today. Employment increased in health care. Mining continued 
to lose jobs, and employment in information decreased due to a strike.

Household Survey Data

In May, the unemployment rate declined by 0.3 percentage point to 4.7 percent, and 
the number of unemployed persons declined by 484,000 to 7.4 million. Both measures 
had shown little movement from August to April. (See table A-1.)

Among the major worker groups, the unemployment rates for adult men (4.3 percent), 
adult women (4.2 percent), Whites (4.1 percent), and Hispanics (5.6 percent) 
declined in May. The rates for teenagers (16.0 percent), Blacks (8.2 percent), and 
Asians (4.1 percent) showed little or no change. (See tables A-1, A-2, and A-3.)

The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks or more) declined 
by 178,000 to 1.9 million in May. These individuals accounted for 25.1 percent of 
the unemployed. The number of persons unemployed less than 5 weeks decreased by 
338,000 to 2.2 million. (See table A-12.)

The number of job losers and persons who completed temporary jobs declined by 
282,000 over the month to 3.6 million. (See table A-11.)

In May, the civilian labor force participation rate decreased by 0.2 percentage 
point to 62.6 percent.  The rate has declined by 0.4 percentage point over the 
past 2 months, offsetting gains in the first quarter. The employment-population 
ratio, at 59.7 percent, was unchanged in May. (See table A-1.)

The number of persons employed part time for economic reasons (also referred to 
as involuntary part-time workers) increased by 468,000 to 6.4 million in May, 
after showing little movement since November. These individuals, who would have 
preferred full-time employment, were working part time because their hours had 
been cut back or because they were unable to find a full-time job. (See table A-8.)

In May, 1.7 million persons were marginally attached to the labor force, little 
changed from a year earlier. (The data are not seasonally adjusted.) These 
individuals were not in the labor force, wanted and were available for work, and 
had looked for a job sometime in the prior 12 months. They were not counted as 
unemployed because they had not searched for work in the 4 weeks preceding the 
survey. (See table A-16.)

Among the marginally attached, there were 538,000 discouraged workers in May, 
essentially unchanged from a year earlier. (The data are not seasonally adjusted.)  
Discouraged workers are persons not currently looking for work because they 
believe no jobs are available for them. The remaining 1.2 million persons 
marginally attached to the labor force in May had not searched for work for 
reasons such as school attendance or family responsibilities. (See table A-16.)

Establishment Survey Data

Total nonfarm payroll employment changed little in May (+38,000). Job growth 
occurred in health care. Mining continued to lose jobs, and a strike resulted 
in job losses in information. (See table B-1.)

Health care added 46,000 jobs in May, with increases occurring in ambulatory 
health care services (+24,000), hospitals (+17,000), and nursing care facilities 
(+5,000). Over the year, health care employment has increased by 487,000.

In May, mining employment continued to decline (-10,000). Since reaching a
peak in September 2014, mining has lost 207,000 jobs. Support activities for 
mining accounted for three-fourths of the jobs lost during this period, including 
6,000 in May.

Employment in information declined by 34,000 in May. About 35,000 workers in the 
telecommunications industry were on strike and not on company payrolls during 
the survey reference period.

Within manufacturing, employment in durable goods declined by 18,000 in May, 
with job losses of 7,000 in machinery and 3,000 in furniture and related products.

Employment in professional and business services changed little in May (+10,000), 
after increasing by 55,000 in April. Within the industry, professional and 
technical services added 26,000 jobs in May, in line with average monthly gains 
over the prior 12 months. Employment in temporary help services was little changed 
over the month (-21,000) but is down by 64,000 thus far this year.

Employment in other major industries, including construction, wholesale trade, 
retail trade, transportation and warehousing, financial activities, leisure and 
hospitality, and government, changed little over the month.

The average workweek for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls was unchanged 
at 34.4 hours in May. The manufacturing workweek increased by 0.1 hour to 40.8 
hours, and manufacturing overtime was unchanged at 3.2 hours. The average workweek 
for production and nonsupervisory employees on private nonfarm payrolls was 
unchanged at 33.6 hours. (See tables B-2 and B-7.)

In May, average hourly earnings for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls 
increased by 5 cents to $25.59, following an increase of 9 cents in April. Over 
the year, average hourly earnings have risen by 2.5 percent. Average hourly 
earnings of private-sector production and nonsupervisory employees increased by 
3 cents to $21.49 in May. (See tables B-3 and B-8.)

The change in total nonfarm payroll employment for March was revised from +208,000 
to +186,000, and the change for April was revised from +160,000 to +123,000. With 
these revisions, employment gains in March and April combined were 59,000 less 
than previously reported. Over the past 3 months, job gains have averaged 116,000 
per month.

The Employment Situation for June is scheduled to be released on Friday, July 8, 
2016, at 8:30 a.m. (EDT).

The PDF version of the news release

News release charts

Supplemental Files Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Last Modified Date: June 03, 2016