Employment continues to trend up in several industries including retail (+31,000), health (+29,000) and construction (+25,000). Unemployment was down to 3.8 percent, and the number of unemployed people declined by 772,000 in May. Other industries like wholesale trade, information, financial activities, hospitality and government remained essentially unchanged. The number of part time workers also remains unchanged at 4.9 million.
Unemployment is Down, but Are Jobs and wages increasing?
The biggest takeaway from this month’s jobs report is that jobs appear to be steadily increasing. Since March, total nonfarm payroll employment has increased from +135,000 to +155,000. In April, this number decreased slightly, however the gains from March and April combined were 15,000 more than previously reported, with average job gains of 179,000 over the last three months. But what about wages?
“People with high school degrees or less than a high school diploma have been doing quite well in recent months,” said Cathy Barrera, chief economist at ZipRecruiter in an interview with CBS. “Over the past year they have been rebounding faster than people with some college or with a college degree.”
“At the same time, that means that the jobs being added are sort of on the lower end of the pay scale, so that dampens overall wage growth,” she added.
The average hourly earnings for all employees on nonfarm payrolls rose by 8 cents in May, giving wages a year over year increase by 71 cents (2.7 percent). In the private sector, this number went up by 7 cents.
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