Prediction: 180,000 seasonally adjusted job additions, with the unemployment rate staying at 7.3%.
Not seasonally adjusted benchmarks: I wasn’t able to pull up the BLS tables before they cut off access for today’s update, so I’ll have to look at those numbers post-release.
The report will be here at 8:30.
HERE IT IS (permanent full HTML version): The malaise continues (bolds are mine) –
Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 148,000 in September, and the unemployment rate was little changed at 7.2 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Employment increased in construction, wholesale trade, and transportation and warehousing.
Household Survey Data
The unemployment rate, at 7.2 percent, changed little in September but has declined by 0.4 percentage point since June. The number of unemployed persons, at 11.3 million, was also little changed over the month; however, unemployment has decreased by 522,000 since June.
Among the major worker groups, the unemployment rates for adult men (7.1 percent), adult women (6.2 percent), teenagers (21.4 percent), whites (6.3 percent), blacks (12.9 percent), and Hispanics (9.0 percent) showed little or no change in September. The jobless rate for Asians was 5.3 percent (not seasonally adjusted), little changed from a year earlier.
… Both the civilian labor force participation rate, at 63.2 percent, and the employment-population ratio at 58.6 percent, were unchanged in September. Over the year, the labor force participation rate has declined by 0.4 percentage point, while the employment-population ratio has changed little.
… Establishment Survey
Total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 148,000 in September, with gains in construction, wholesale trade, and transportation and warehousing. Over the prior 12 months, employment growth averaged 185,000 per month.
… In September, employment in professional and business services continued to expand (+32,000). Over the prior 12 months, employment growth in this industry averaged 52,000 per month. Employment in temporary help services continued to trend up in September (+20,000).
… The change in total nonfarm payroll employment for July was revised from +104,000 to +89,000, and the change for August was revised from +169,000 to +193,000. With these revisions, employment gains in July and August combined were 9,000 more than previously reported.
I have little doubt that a deeper dive will be even more disturbing than what we’ve seen already in yet another report with weak job gains compared to what’s needed and yet another unemployment rate decline which appears to be driven by workforce dropouts.
Updates will be coming shortly.
UPDATE 1: Quick data points, added as I see them (seasonally adjusted unless otherwise indicated) –
- Only 73,000 people entered the workforce in September after a 312,000-person decline in August. In other words, there was no bounceback. The workforce has only grown by 503,000 in the past 12 months.
- Seasonally adjusted government employment has grown by 54,000 in the past two months (33K state, 34K local and -13K federal).
- BLS says Establishment Survey employment is up by 185K per month in the past 12 months (i.e., total of 2.20 million), but Household Survey employment increases have only averaged 111,000 (total of 1.33 million). That’s a difference of almost 900,000.
- “Not in Labor Force” crept up by another 136,000 to 90.609 million.
- The unemployment rate for 20-and-over black men has gone from 12.5 percent to 14.0 percent in the past two months, while the rate for 20-and-over black women has dropped from 12.0 percent to 10.0 percent in the past three months.
- There was a big seasonally adjusted swing to full-time workers in September (+691,000), while part-timers fell by 594,000 — which is really odd, because the raw numbers show 560,000 full-time jobs lost and 702,000 part-time jobs gained. What? (See Update 3.)
- Temporary help service employment is up by 41,400 in the past two months. August’s increase was revised up from 13,100 to 21,200.
Overall, today’s report nukes any attempt to claim that “things were great before the shutdown.” They weren’t. Not at all.
UPDATE 2: The raw numbers are also weak.
800,000 jobs needed to be added overall for meaningful progress; the actual September result was 612,000, essentially the same as last year’s 621,000 and way down from the 747,000 seen in 2011, which was of course not a banner year.
In the private sector, September is typically a month of big job losses because of the end of seasonal summer employment. The September 2013 job loss was 404,000, worse than last year’s -346K and far worse than the -233K seen in 2011.
On a seasonally adjusted basis, the private sector job growth averaged only 129K in the third quarter, down from 190K in the second and 212K in the first.
UPDATE 3: September 2012 and September 2013 saw historically small raw drops in full-time employment (-536K and -560K, respectively, vs. well over 1 million in each of the preceding nine years). Meanwhile, raw part-time job additions in September 2013 were only 702K compared to 1.3 million in 2012. Readers may recall that the September 2012 report generated some controversy over the huge number of overall job adds in the Household Survey, to the point where some were calling the whole thing phony.