Employment numbers jumped upward in BLS’s September 2023 report, rebounding sharply to notch 336,000 new positions. (Well above the 130-150,000 range estimated increase needed on a monthly basis to stay-up with growing demographics). The non-seasonally adjusted construction unemployment rate came-in at 3.8 percent for September, consistent with seasonal work trends. [The unemployment figure is down by 0.1 basis points vs. August; while up 0.4 point from last year’s September 2022 level].
General unemployment stayed the same at 3.8 percent. (“Unemployed persons” remained at 6.4 million per the government count). The “labor force participation rate” stayed at 62.8 percent. [NOTE: The “labor force participation” rate “typically” works inversely to the overall unemployment figures. Meaning: as it deteriorates/gets worse or smaller, it actually is counted as improving unemployment (i.e., people leaving the workforce are no longer counted as unemployed by the DOL). The “employment to population ratio” remained at 60.4 percent. [Both measures haven’t reached their pre-Covid levels yet; if people were actually seeking jobs, the unemployment rate would be approximately 5.0% ]. Average hourly earnings continue to increase, now standing at $29.06 for private sector production and nonsupervisory employees.
See the Workforce Statistics Chart.