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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

                         Erica L. Groshen
                    Bureau of Labor Statistics

                     Friday, November 4, 2016

      Nonfarm payroll employment increased by 161,000 in October, 
and the unemployment rate was little changed at 4.9 percent. 
Employment continued to trend up in health care, professional 
and business services, and financial activities. Thus far this 
year, nonfarm job growth has averaged 181,000 per month, 
compared with an average gain of 229,000 per month in 2015.

      Incorporating revisions for August and September, which 
increased nonfarm payroll employment by 44,000, monthly job 
gains have averaged 176,000 over the past 3 months. 

      In October, health care employment rose by 31,000, with 
gains in ambulatory health care services (+19,000) and hospitals 
(+13,000). Over the year, health care has added 415,000 jobs.

      Employment in professional and business services continued 
to trend up over the month (+43,000) and has expanded by 542,000 
over the year. Within the industry, computer systems design and 
related services added 8,000 jobs in October. Employment in 
management and technical consulting services continued on an 
upward trend (+5,000).

      Employment in financial activities also continued to trend 
up in October (+14,000). Insurance carriers and related 
activities added 8,000 jobs. Over the year, financial activities 
employment has grown by 172,000.

      Employment in other major industries--mining, construction, 
manufacturing, wholesale trade, retail trade, transportation and 
warehousing, information, leisure and hospitality, and 
government--changed little over the month.

      Average hourly earnings of all employees on private nonfarm 
payrolls grew by 10 cents in October to $25.92, following an 
8-cent increase in September. Over the past 12 months, average 
hourly earnings have risen by 2.8 percent. From September 2015 
to September 2016, the Consumer Price Index for All Urban 
Consumers (CPI-U) increased by 1.5 percent (on a seasonally 
adjusted basis).

      Turning to data from the survey of households, both the 
unemployment rate, at 4.9 percent, and the number of unemployed 
people, at 7.8 million, changed little over the month and have 
shown little net movement since August 2015. Among the 
unemployed in October, 2.0 million, or 25.2 percent, had been 
searching for work for 27 weeks or more.

      The labor force participation rate, at 62.8 percent, and 
the employment-population ratio, at 59.7 percent, changed little 
over the month. These measures have shown little movement in 
recent months, although both are up over the year. 

      Among people employed in October, the number working part 
time for economic reasons, also referred to as involuntary part-
time workers, was 5.9 million. This measure has shown little net 
change over the past year.

      Among people who were neither working nor looking for work, 
1.7 million were marginally attached to the labor force in 
October, down from 1.9 million a year earlier. Discouraged 
workers, a subset of the marginally attached who believed that 
no jobs were available for them, numbered 487,000 in October, 
also down from a year earlier. (Marginally attached to the labor 
force refers to people who 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 161,000 
in October, and the unemployment rate was little changed at 4.9 

Last Modified Date: November 04, 2016