September 08, 2004
Total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 144,000 from July to August. Over the year, payroll employment has risen by 1.7 million, with slightly more than half the gain (885,000) occurring from March through May of this year.
Health care and social assistance continued to add jobs, with an increase of 42,000 in August. Employment rose in ambulatory health care services, which includes doctors' offices and home health care services, and in hospitals.
Professional and technical services added 22,000 jobs over the month. Within this industry, employment rose in computer systems design and related services. Employment in temporary help services was little changed in August.
Employment in manufacturing edged up by 22,000 in August.
The number of workers employed in the financial activities sector increased by 18,000 in August. Within this sector, rental and leasing services added 7,000 jobs over the month, and securities, commodity contracts, and investments added 4,000.
Within the information industry, employment continued to trend down in telecommunications. Since its most recent peak in March 2001, the telecommunications industry has lost 293,000 jobs, or 22 percent of its employment.
Payroll employment data are from the BLS Current Employment Statistics program. The above data are seasonally adjusted. Data for July and August 2004 are preliminary and subject to revision. To learn more about the employment and unemployment, see "The Employment Situation: August 2004" (PDF) (TXT), news release USDL 04-1728.