Commissioner's Statement on the Employment Situation News Release

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.

                          Statement of

                        Erica L. Groshen
                   Bureau of Labor Statistics

                    Friday, October 7, 2016

      Nonfarm payroll employment increased by 156,000 in 
September, and the unemployment rate was little changed at 5.0 
percent. Job gains occurred in professional and business 
services and in health care. Thus far this year, nonfarm job 
growth has averaged 178,000 per month, compared with an average 
gain of 229,000 per month in 2015.

      Incorporating revisions for July and August, which reduced 
nonfarm payroll employment by 7,000 on net, monthly job gains 
have averaged 192,000 over the past 3 months. 

      Professional and business services employment rose by 
67,000 in September and by 582,000 over the year. Within the 
industry, employment in management and technical consulting 
services increased by 16,000 over the month, and employment 
continued to trend up in administrative and support services 

      Health care added 33,000 jobs in September, with gains in 
ambulatory health care services (+24,000) and hospitals 
(+7,000). Over the past 12 months, health care employment has 
grown by 445,000.

      Employment continued to trend up in food services and 
drinking places (+30,000) in September. Over the year, this 
industry has added 300,000 jobs. 

      Employment also continued to trend up over the month in 
retail trade (+22,000) and was up by 317,000 over the year.

      Mining employment was flat in September; the rate of job 
loss in the industry had been moderating in recent months.

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

      Average hourly earnings of all employees on private nonfarm 
payrolls increased by 6 cents in September to $25.79. Over the 
past 12 months, average hourly earnings have risen by 2.6 
percent. From August 2015 to August 2016, the Consumer Price 
Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) increased by 1.1 percent 
(on a seasonally adjusted basis).

      Turning to data from the survey of households, most major 
labor market measures continued to show little or no change in 
September. The unemployment rate, at 5.0 percent, and the number 
of unemployed people, at 7.9 million, were essentially unchanged 
over the month and have shown little net movement since August 

      Among the unemployed in September, 2.0 million, or 24.9 
percent, had been searching for work for 27 weeks or more.

      The labor force participation rate, at 62.9 percent, and 
the employment-population ratio, at 59.8 percent, changed little 
over the month. Both measures have shown little movement in 
recent months, but were up by 0.5 percentage point over the 

      Among the employed, 5.9 million worked part time for 
economic reasons in September, little different from August. 
(These involuntary part-time workers would prefer to work full 
time, but had their hours cut back or were unable to find full-
time jobs.) 

      Among people who were neither working nor looking for work 
in September, 1.8 million were marginally attached to the labor 
force, about the same as a year earlier. Discouraged workers, a 
subset of the marginally attached who believed that no jobs were 
available for them, numbered 553,000 in September, also about 
the same as a year earlier. (Marginally attached to the labor 
force refers to those 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, nonfarm payroll employment increased by 156,000 
in September, and the unemployment rate was little changed at 
5.0 percent. 

Last Modified Date: October 07, 2016