The unemployment rate decreased to 7.8 percent in September, and total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 114,000, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Employment increased in health care and in transportation and warehousing but changed little in most other major industries.
In transportation and warehousing, employment increased by 17,000. There were also job gains in transit and ground passenger transportation (+9,000) and in warehousing and storage (+4,000).
Manufacturing employment edged down in September (-16,000). On net, manufacturing employment has been unchanged since April. In September, job losses occurred in computer and electronic products (-6,000) and in printing and related activities (-3,000).
Employment in other major industries, including mining and logging, construction, wholesale trade, retail trade, information, professional and business services, leisure and hospitality, and government, showed little change over the month.
For the first 8 months of the year, the rate held within a narrow range of 8.1 and 8.3 percent. The number of unemployed persons, at 12.1 million, decreased by 456,000 in September.
Among the major worker groups, the unemployment rates for adult men (7.3 percent), adult women (7.0 percent), and whites (7.0 percent) declined over the month. The unemployment rates for teenagers (23.7 percent), blacks (13.4 percent), and Hispanics (9.9 percent) were little changed. The jobless rate for Asians, at 4.8 percent (not seasonally adjusted), fell over the year.
In September, the number of job losers and persons who completed temporary jobs decreased by 468,000 to 6.5 million.
The number of persons unemployed for less than 5 weeks declined by 302,000 over the month to 2.5 million. The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks or more) was little changed at 4.8 million and accounted for 40.1 percent of the unemployed.
Total employment rose by 873,000 in September, following 3 months of little change. The employment-population ratio increased by 0.4 percentage points to 58.7 percent, after edging down in the prior 2 months. The overall trend in the employment-population ratio for this year has been flat. The civilian labor force rose by 418,000 to 155.1 million in September, while the labor force participation rate was little changed at 63.6 percent.
The number of persons employed part time for economic reasons (sometimes referred to as involuntary part-time workers) rose from 8.0 million in August to 8.6 million in September. These individuals were working part time because their hours had been cut back or because they were unable to find a full-time job.