Transmission of material in this news release is embargoed until USDL-18-1586
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THE EMPLOYMENT SITUATION -- SEPTEMBER 2018
The unemployment rate declined to 3.7 percent in September, and total nonfarm payroll employment increased
by 134,000, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Job gains occurred in professional and
business services, in health care, and in transportation and warehousing.
| Hurricane Florence |
| Hurricane Florence affected parts of the East Coast during the September reference periods |
| for the establishment and household surveys. Response rates for the two surveys were within |
| normal ranges. For information on how severe weather can affect employment and hours data, |
| see Question 8 in the Frequently Asked Questions section of this news release. |
| BLS will release the state estimates of employment and unemployment on October 19, 2018, at |
| 10:00 a.m. (EDT). |
Household Survey Data
The unemployment rate declined by 0.2 percentage point to 3.7 percent in September, and the number of
unemployed persons decreased by 270,000 to 6.0 million. Over the year, the unemployment rate and the
number of unemployed persons declined by 0.5 percentage point and 795,000, respectively. (See table A-1.)
Among the major worker groups, the unemployment rates for adult women (3.3 percent) and Whites (3.3
percent) declined in September. The jobless rates for adult men (3.4 percent), teenagers (12.8 percent),
Blacks (6.0 percent), Asians (3.5 percent), and Hispanics (4.5 percent) showed little or no change over
the month. (See tables A-1, A-2, and A-3.)
The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks or more) was little changed at 1.4 million
over the month; these individuals accounted for 22.9 percent of the unemployed. (See table A-12.)
In September, the labor force participation rate remained at 62.7 percent, and the employment-population
ratio, at 60.4 percent, was little changed. (See table A-1.)
The number of persons employed part time for economic reasons (sometimes referred to as involuntary part-
time workers) increased by 263,000 to 4.6 million in September. These individuals, who would have
preferred full-time employment, were working part time because their hours had been reduced or they were
unable to find full-time jobs. (See table A-8.)
In September, 1.6 million persons were marginally attached to the labor force, essentially unchanged from
a year earlier. (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
Among the marginally attached, there were 383,000 discouraged workers in September, about unchanged from a
year earlier. (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 September 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 rose by 134,000 in September, compared with an average monthly gain of
201,000 over the prior 12 months. In September, job gains occurred in professional and business services,
in health care, and in transportation and warehousing. (See table B-1.)
Employment in professional and business services increased by 54,000 in September and has risen by 560,000
over the year.
Health care employment rose by 26,000 in September. Hospitals added 12,000 jobs, and employment in
ambulatory health care services continued to trend up (+10,000). Over the year, health care employment has
increased by 302,000.
In September, employment in transportation and warehousing rose by 24,000. Job gains occurred in
warehousing and storage (+8,000) and in couriers and messengers (+5,000). Over the year, employment in
transportation and warehousing has increased by 174,000.
Construction employment continued to trend up in September (+23,000). The industry has added 315,000 jobs
over the past 12 months.
Employment in manufacturing continued to trend up in September (+18,000), reflecting a gain in durable
goods industries. Over the year, manufacturing has added 278,000 jobs, with about four-fifths of the gain
in the durable goods component.
Within mining, employment in support activities for mining rose by 6,000 over the month and by 53,000 over
Employment in leisure and hospitality was little changed over the month (-17,000). Prior to September,
employment in the industry had been on a modest upward trend. Some of the weakness in this industry in
September may reflect the impact of Hurricane Florence.
Employment showed little or no change over the month in other major industries, including wholesale trade,
retail trade, information, financial activities, and government.
The average workweek for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls remained unchanged at 34.5 hours in
September. In manufacturing, the workweek edged down by 0.1 hour to 40.8 hours, and overtime edged down by
0.1 hour to 3.4 hours. The average workweek for production and nonsupervisory employees on private nonfarm
payrolls was unchanged at 33.7 hours. (See tables B-2 and B-7.)
In September, average hourly earnings for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls rose by 8 cents to
$27.24. Over the year, average hourly earnings have increased by 73 cents, or 2.8 percent. Average hourly
earnings of private-sector production and nonsupervisory employees increased by 6 cents to $22.81 in
September. (See tables B-3 and B-8.)
The change in total nonfarm payroll employment for July was revised up from +147,000 to +165,000, and the
change for August was revised up from +201,000 to +270,000. With these revisions, employment gains in July
and August combined were 87,000 more than previously reported. (Monthly revisions result from additional
reports received from businesses and government agencies since the last published estimates and from the
recalculation of seasonal factors.) After revisions, job gains have averaged 190,000 per month over the
last 3 months.
The Employment Situation for October is scheduled to be released on Friday, November 2, 2018, at 8:30 a.m.