Unemployment Rate Holds Steady at 3.6%

Jobs Growth:

There were 390,000 new jobs created in the month of May, representing solid growth but at a less robust pace than in recent months, including the revised April tally of 436,000.

Top Industries:

Continued growth was recorded in leisure and hospitality, professional and business services, and transportation and warehousing. Retail employment declined over the month.


The unemployment rate, unchanged over the past three months, held steady at 3.6%.


May recorded another 10-cent increase in average hourly compensation, contributing to a 12-month average monthly wage increase of 5.2%.

Work Week:

Repeating the same story over the past three months, the average work week remained at 34.6 hours.

Temporary Job Trends:

In May, the temporary help sector recorded the creation of 19,300 new jobs. That comes after upwardly revising the numbers for the past two months.

What Does It All Mean?

Last month, it was suggested that the slowing pace of job growth might signal a weakening economy. That theme continues this month, with some economists warning of a future recession, while others simply point to the natural leveling of the market, as we approach pre-pandemic employment levels. The dual challenges employers still face: 11.5 million unfilled jobs and high quit rates among the currently employed. Ongoing skills shortages and rising demands from workers for higher pay and a diverse new slate of social, economic, and lifestyle benefits require new approaches to talent acquisition and retention. Employers can no longer predictably rely on strategies that worked in the past to successfully address workforce needs in the future. With both the nature of work and the workforce itself in a state of near-constant transition, employers should focus on flexibility, as they explore innovative solutions to recruit and retain the talent required to propel growth.

Sources: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Staffing Industry Analysts, American Staffing Association, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, FOX News, Bloomberg, NBC News, CNBC