Job Growth Remains Strong in July
JOB GROWTH: Although not as strong as the gains seen in June, hiring activity remained strong in July, with the addition of 164,000 new jobs.
TOP INDUSTRIES: Growth in July was strongest across professional and technical services, healthcare, social assistance and financial activities.
UNEMPLOYMENT: Unchanged from the previous month, the unemployment rate maintained its near-record low of 3.7%.
WAGES: Wage growth was positive again in July, with average hourly earnings for the year moving slightly ahead to 3.2%.
WORK WEEK: There was a small contraction in the work week in July, with average hours dropping back to 34.3.
TEMPORARY JOB TRENDS: The temporary help sector added 2,200 new jobs in July.
WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN? July was a month in which labor market indicators were strong and steady, albeit, unremarkable. Jobs, wages and unemployment all closely met expectations. Overall, economists say the outlook is good, even though forward momentum is clearly slowing in comparison with 2018. This good news for the economy continues to challenge employers, as the talent pool shows no significant signs of expanding to meet current demands for workers across the board. To counter this, some employers are increasing their investments in automation; others are expanding their recruiting efforts to engage candidates still in school and military service, as well as in previously underrepresented communities.
This newsletter references the BLS Report of July activity, released 8/2/19.
Sources: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), Steinberg Employment Research, CNBC, CNN, The New York Times, Bloomberg, The Washington Post