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Economic News Release

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

                           William J. Wiatrowski
                            Acting Commissioner
                       Bureau of Labor Statistics

                        Friday, November 2, 2018

      Nonfarm payroll employment rose by 250,000 in October, and 
the unemployment rate held at 3.7 percent. Employment increased 
in health care, in manufacturing, in construction, and in 
transportation and warehousing. 
      Incorporating revisions for August and September, which 
offset each other, monthly job gains averaged 218,000 over the 
past 3 months. 
      Hurricane Michael made landfall in the Florida Panhandle on 
October 10, 2018, during the reference periods for both the 
establishment and household surveys. Hurricane Michael had no 
discernible effect on the national employment and unemployment 
estimates for October, and response rates for the two surveys 
were within normal ranges. Regional and state estimates for 
October will be released on November 16th. 
      In October, health care added 36,000 jobs. Within the 
industry, job gains occurred in hospitals (+13,000) and in 
nursing and residential care facilities (+8,000). Employment in 
ambulatory health care services continued to trend up (+14,000). 
Over the year, employment in health care increased by 323,000. 
      Manufacturing added 32,000 jobs in October. Most of this 
increase occurred in the durable goods component (+21,000), with 
a gain of 10,000 jobs in transportation equipment. Over the past 
12 months, manufacturing added 296,000 jobs, the bulk of which 
were in durable goods. 
      Employment in construction increased by 30,000 in October 
and by 330,000 over the year. Residential specialty trade 
contractors added 14,000 jobs over the month. 
      Transportation and warehousing added 25,000 jobs in 
October. Job growth in the industry has picked up over the past 
3 months. In October, job gains occurred in couriers and 
messengers (+8,000) and in warehousing and storage (+8,000). 
      Employment in leisure and hospitality edged up in October 
(+42,000). Employment was unchanged in September, likely 
reflecting the impact of Hurricane Florence. The average job 
gain over these 2 months (+21,000) was the same as the average 
monthly gain in the industry for the 12 months prior to 
      In October, employment in professional and business 
services continued to trend up (+35,000). Over the year, the 
industry added 516,000 jobs.
      Employment in mining also continued to trend up over the 
month (+5,000) and was up by 65,000 over the year. 
      Employment in other major industries--including wholesale 
trade, retail trade, information, financial activities, and 
government--showed little change over the month. 
      Average hourly earnings of all employees on private nonfarm 
payrolls increased by 5 cents in October to $27.30. Over the 
past 12 months, average hourly earnings were up by 3.1 percent. 
From September 2017 to September 2018, the Consumer Price Index 
for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) increased by 2.3 percent (on a 
seasonally adjusted basis). 
      Turning to measures from the household survey, the 
unemployment rate was unchanged at 3.7 percent in October, and 
the number of unemployed people changed little at 6.1 million. 
Over the year, the jobless rate was down by 0.4 percentage 
point, and the number of unemployed decreased by 449,000. 
      Among the unemployed, the number who had been searching for 
work for 27 weeks or longer, at 1.4 million, was essentially 
unchanged in October. These long-term unemployed accounted for 
22.5 percent of the total unemployed.
      Over the month, the labor force increased by 711,000 and 
the labor force participation rate increased by 0.2 percentage 
point to 62.9 percent. Over the year, the labor force 
participation rate has shown little change.
      In October, the employment-population ratio edged up by 0.2 
percentage point to 60.6 percent. Over the year, the employment-
population ratio was up by 0.4 percentage point.
      In October, there were 4.6 million people working part time 
for economic reasons (also referred to as involuntary part-time 
workers), about unchanged from the previous month.
       Among those neither working nor looking for work in 
October, 1.5 million were considered marginally attached to the 
labor force, little different from a year earlier. Discouraged 
workers, a subset of the marginally attached who believed no 
jobs were available for them, numbered 506,000 in October, also 
little different from a year earlier. (People who are marginally 
attached to the labor force had not looked for work in the 4 
weeks prior to the survey but wanted a job, were available to 
work, and had looked for a job within the last 12 months.)
      In summary, nonfarm payroll employment increased by 250,000 
in October, and the unemployment rate held at 3.7 percent.

Last Modified Date: November 02, 2018