October 09, 2001
Payroll employment fell by 199,000 in September, and the unemployment rate was unchanged at 4.9 percent. Sharp job losses continued in manufacturing, and employment also fell in services, wholesale trade, and retail trade.
In the goods-producing sector, the downward trend in manufacturing employment continued, as factories lost 93,000 jobs in September. This was the 14th consecutive month of factory job losses, bringing the decline in employment since July 2000 to 1.1 million. Employment declines were also reported in wholesale and retail trade, services, and transportation and public utilities.
Employment was little changed in mining, construction and government and rose slightly in finance, insurance, and real estate.
Payroll employment data are products of the Current Employment Statistics program. The terrorist attacks of September 11 occurred during the reference periods for the Bureau's monthly employment surveys. In addition to the tragic loss of life, the attacks caused many businesses to shut down for one or more days. In the establishment survey, however, persons paid for any part of the reference period are considered employed. Similarly, in the household survey, persons working during any part of the reference week, as well as those temporarily absent from their jobs, are considered employed. Thus, it is likely that the events of September 11 had little effect on the September employment and unemployment counts. For more information, see The Employment Situation: September 2001, news release USDL 01-331.