Job Growth Continues in May, Adding 200,000+ Jobs
Unemployment Continues to Drop
JOB GROWTH: New job creation continued in May, with a gain of 223,000 jobs.
TOP INDUSTRIES: The most significant job gains this month were seen in retail, healthcare, construction and transportation and warehousing.
UNEMPLOYMENT: Following last month’s record-setting pace, the unemployment rate dropped further in May, moving from 3.9 percent to 3.8 percent. In the past year, the number of unemployed persons has decreased by nearly three quarters of a million.
WAGES: Payrolls edged ahead slightly in May, with average hourly earnings moving back up to 2.7 percent on an annual basis.
WORK WEEK: There was no change in the average work week in May, remaining at 34.5 hours.
TEMPORARY JOB TRENDS: Growth in the temporary jobs sector slipped in May, registering a loss of 7,800 jobs.
WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN? As the economy experiences the longest period of job growth on record, the labor market continues to tighten. People who have long struggled to find employment are suddenly much more desirable candidates. Employers, finding it increasingly difficult to attract new talent, are making headlines by introducing new incentives and perks, such as college tuition, educational debt assistance, signing bonuses and more generous parental leave policies. More are opening their wallets wider to increase pay, although that is one area that continues to lag a bit. Better compensation is still a leading factor in job change decisions,
putting retention at risk. With job candidates fielding multiple offers, employers need to speed up hiring decisions or lose the best candidates to competitors.
This newsletter references the BLS Report of May activity, released 6/1/18.
Sources: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), Steinberg Employment Research, CNBC, Staffing Industry Analysts, Business Insider, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times