June 10, 2008
Total nonfarm payroll employment continued to trend down in May 2008 (-49,000). Thus far in 2008, payroll employment has declined by 324,000.
In May, job losses continued in construction, manufacturing, retail trade, and temporary help services. Health care again added jobs over the month.
Employment in construction fell by 34,000 in May. Since an employment peak in September 2006, construction has lost 475,000 jobs.
Manufacturing employment continued to fall over the month (-26,000), with job losses in wood products, computer and electronic products, and nonmetallic mineral products. Thus far in 2008, monthly job losses in manufacturing have averaged 41,000 compared with 22,000 a month in 2007 and 14,000 a month in 2006.
Retail trade employment decreased by 27,000 in May. Since March 2007, retail trade has shed 184,000 jobs.
Over the month, employment in temporary help services continued to decline (-30,000) and has fallen by 193,000 since its most recent peak in December 2006.
Employment continued to rise throughout health care in May (34,000). Job growth over the last 12 months has totaled 383,000.
These data are from the BLS Current Employment Statistics program, and are seasonally adjusted. Data for the most recent two months are preliminary. More information can be found in "The Employment Situation: May 2008," (HTML) (PDF) news release USDL 08-0757.