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More Jobs Than Expected Added in September

October 7th, 2011 Comments off

From zero to 103,000 in 30 days…

What sounds like the tag line of a lame Nicolas Cage action movie (redundant?) actually describes the change in the number of jobs created since last month, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which released September’s Employment Situation Report this morning.

Here’s a summary:

  • Nonfarm payroll employment increased by 103,000 in September; however, that number includes the return to payrolls of about 45,000 [Verizon] telecommunications workers who had been on strike in August.
  • The private sector added 137,000 jobs in September, with health care and education leading the growth, while local government shed 35,000 jobs, including 24,400 in public education.
  • The number of unemployed persons was relatively unchanged at 14 million and the unemployment rate held at 9.1 percent.
  • The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks and over) was 6.2 million in September.
  • Since April, payroll employment has increased by an average of 72,000 per month, compared with an average of 161,000 for the prior seven months.

While it’s nice to see that jobs were actually added this month (and even surpassed economists’ predictions of around 55,000), 103,000 still falls far short of the around 200,000 jobs needed each month just to fuel growth.

But before I become too much of a Debbie Downer, I’ll just reiterate White House blogger Katherine Abraham’s advice to “not to read too much into any one monthly report.” Done and done, Katherine.

Related links:

More Jobs Than Expected Added in September

October 7th, 2011 Comments off

From zero to 103,000 in 30 days…

What sounds like the tag line of a lame Nicolas Cage action movie (redundant?) actually describes the change in the number of jobs created since last month, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which released September’s Employment Situation Report this morning.

Here’s a summary:

  • Nonfarm payroll employment increased by 103,000 in September; however, that number includes the return to payrolls of about 45,000 [Verizon] telecommunications workers who had been on strike in August.
  • The private sector added 137,000 jobs in September, with health care and education leading the growth, while local government shed 35,000 jobs, including 24,400 in public education.
  • The number of unemployed persons was relatively unchanged at 14 million and the unemployment rate held at 9.1 percent.
  • The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks and over) was 6.2 million in September.
  • Since April, payroll employment has increased by an average of 72,000 per month, compared with an average of 161,000 for the prior seven months.

While it’s nice to see that jobs were actually added this month (and even surpassed economists’ predictions of around 55,000), 103,000 still falls far short of the around 200,000 jobs needed each month just to fuel growth.

But before I become too much of a Debbie Downer, I’ll just reiterate White House blogger Katherine Abraham’s advice to “not to read too much into any one monthly report.” Done and done, Katherine.

Related links:

July’s Job Numbers: The Sky Isn’t Falling! (But Don’t Put Away That Chicken Little Costume Yet)

August 5th, 2011 Comments off

July's Job Numbers: The Sky Isn't FallingIf you were betting on job numbers, and you bet that 18,000 new jobs were created last month, thinking we’d have a repeat of June, you’d be wrong. But it’s probably a bet you’d be happy to lose, because in July, we added 117,000 jobs, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ “The Employment Situation” summary for July 2011. This jump followed two months of very little growth (in May and June).

Despite this growth and landing above Wall Street expectations, we’re still below the number needed to really make a dent in the unemployment rate — but it’s an improvement. So, the sky isn’t falling — and let’s just say we’re cautiously optimistic, yes?

Other details from this month’s “The Employment Situation” summary:

  • Net growth explanation: 154,000 jobs were created in the private sector, but with a loss in government jobs of 37,000, we saw a net increase of 117,000.
  • May and June’s low growth numbers have also had positive net revisions of  56,000.
  • The labor force, at 152.3 million, did not change much in July.
  • The unemployment rate was little changed but we did see improvement, from 9.2 to 9.1 percent. It’s important to keep in mind, however, that this lower rate was due to more individuals dropping out of the employment search (labor force participation fell from 64.1 percent to 63.9 percent).
  • Average hourly earnings for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls increased by 10 cents to $23.13. Over the past 12 months, average hourly earnings have increased by 2.3 percent.
  • Neither average weekly hours or the number of temporary employees rose; as The Economist points out, both are indicators of future labor demand.

Hiring by industry

We saw job gains in health care, retail trade, manufacturing, and mining. Specifically:

  • Health care employment grew by 31,000 in July. Ambulatory health care services and hospitals each added14,000 jobs over the month. Over the past 12 months, health care employment has grown by 299,000.
  • Retail trade added 26,000 jobs in July. Employment in health and personal care stores rose by 9,000 over the month with small increases distributed among several other retail industries.
  • Manufacturing employment increased by 24,000 in July; nearly all of the increase was in durable
    goods manufacturing. Within durable goods, the motor vehicles and parts industry had fewer seasonal
    layoffs than typical for July, contributing to a seasonally adjusted employment increase of 12,000 jobs.
  • Mining employment rose by 9,000; virtually all of the gain (+8,000) occurred in support activities for mining.
  • Professional and technical services continued to trend up in July, with a gain of 18,000 jobs.
  • Employment in construction, transportation and warehousing, information, leisure and hospitality, and financial activities changed little in July.
  • Government employment continued to trend down in July, with a loss of 37,000. Employment in state government decreased by 23,000, due almost entirely to a partial shutdown of the Minnesota state government.
  • Average hourly earnings for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls increased by 10 cents in July to $23.13. Over the past 12 months, average hourly earnings have increased by 2.3 percent. Average hourly earnings of private-sector production and nonsupervisory employees increased by 8 cents to $19.52.

See what CareerBuilder CEO Matt Ferguson had to say yesterday on CNBC’s Squawk Box program about job creation, the biggest skill shortage we’re facing right now, and more.

What do you think about July’s BLS job numbers?

BLS Employment Situation Report for July — Channeling “Groundhog Day”?

August 6th, 2010 Comments off

July’s job numbers were just released by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, and they may give you flashes of Bill Murray a la Groundhog Day, as the unemployment rate remained at 9.5 percent in July and another month went by without significant improvement in our employment situation.  But as Bill Murray’s character, Phil Connors,  reminded us in the film, we can see see the groundhog signifying six more weeks of winter as  bleak and dark and bereft of hope,  or look at the positives of the situation and acknowledge where we’re improving. After all, we’ve gained 630,000 private sector jobs this year — and there’s still five months of 2010 that remains to be seen.

Additionally, we’re seeing moderate, sequential improvements across almost every job category on CareerBuilder itself. Entry-level jobs are up 100 percent year over year,  and in the skilled areas for both construction and manufacturing, we’re seeing jobs up 50 percent year over year, as CareerBuilder CEO Matt Ferguson pointed out on CNBC’s Squawk Box this morning. Ferguson explained July’s job numbers from his point of view, how things have changed since 2008, and the good and the bad of what’s going on now.

Watch the VIDEO:


Let’s take a closer look at BLS’s Employment Situation report for July:

  • Both the number of unemployed persons, at 14.6 million, and the unemployment rate, at 9.5 percent, were unchanged in July.
  • Total nonfarm payroll employment declined by 131,000 in July, but those losses were due to to 143,000 temporary workers hired for the decennial census completing their work.
  • So far this year, private sector employment has increased by 630,000, with about two-thirds of the gain occurring in March and April.
  • The average hourly wage rose slightly in July, from $22.55, to $22.59. Over the past 12 months, average hourly earnings have increased by 1.8 percent.
  • Private employers added 71,000 jobs in July, up from a downwardly revised 31,000 in June but below the consensus forecast of 90,000.
  • The number of persons employed part time for economic reasons (because either their hours had been cut back or they were unable to find a full-time job) was essentially unchanged over the month at 8.5 million but has declined by 623,000 since April.
  • The average workweek for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls increased from 34.1 hours to 34.2 hours — signaling employers are looking for more productivity from the same number of workers.

NOTE: June’s number was revised dramatically downward to a total loss of 221,000 jobs. The agency originally reported that the nation lost 125,000 jobs in June.

Industry-Specific Changes for July:

  • Manufacturing employment increased by 36,000 over the month. Manufacturing employment has expanded by 183,000 since December 2009.
  • Health care added 27,000 jobs in July. Over the past 12 months, health care employment has risen by 231,000.
  • Employment in professional and business services was little changed (13,000) in July.
  • The number of jobs in temporary help services showed little movement (-6,000) over the month.
  • Employment in financial activities continued to trend down in July, with a decline of 17,000. So far this year, monthly job losses in the industry have averaged 12,000, compared with an average monthly job loss of 29,000 for all of 2009.
  • Construction employment changed little (-11,000) in July; 10,000 construction workers were off payrolls due to strike activity.
  • Employment in other private-sector industries, including wholesale trade, retail trade, information, and leisure and hospitality showed little change in July.

What happens next?

Although we’ve pointed out positives when looking at 2010 as a whole, expectations are high, and many say job market improvements are not keeping up with the number of entrants to the job market. An article in The New York Times stresses that today’s unemployment report renewed pressure on lawmakers to consider the next steps they might take to bolster the economy. After more of the same with job numbers, employers are hoping to break the Phil Connors cycle and wake up next to Rita with “I’ve Got You Babe” playing on the radio — er, wake up with more jobs to be had and more people getting work. Time will tell as to what combination of factors will get us there — and stop us from stepping in that same puddle every morning.

A Final Look Back at April’s Hiring Woes and Recruitment Wins

April 30th, 2010 Comments off

Woman looking surprised at recruitment news on computer screenIf you can tear yourself away from KFC’s Double Down sandwich or the latest episode of Glee long enough, take a few minutes to check out what you’ve missed this past month in the wonderful and sometimes wacky world of recruitment.

We found reason to be optimistic with CareerBuilder and USA Today’s Q2 2010 hiring forecast results, and BLS released March’s Employment Situation report, which revealed that the economy saw its largest job gain in three years. And hey! Things are even looking up for college graduates in terms of the job outlook.

While we’re talking about better news in hiring, I should probably mention that we just released our new how-to-hire e-book, CareerBuilder’s Ultimate Recruitment Guide. Download a copy for yourself — or your team — now.

What are workers spending their tax refunds on this year? Is it that trip to see grandma in Wyoming? A new lifetime supply of bathroom tissue? You may be surprised. On that note, a new CareerBuilder survey found that the majority of employers are doing something to become more environmentally friendly, or “green” –investing in bathroom tissue made from recycled tissue, perhaps?

Jim Greenwood, CEO of Concentra, Inc. shared his thoughts on being a CEO — a Chief Encouragement Officer, that is — and talked about Concentra’s workplace culture, the importance of giving colleagues an opt out, and much more.  Another leader, Martha O’Gorman, chief marketing officer at Liberty Tax Service, talked with us about why employees should be left to do their jobs, when humor’s appropriate in workplace culture, and why the company doesn’t believe in traditional national advertising.

Do you want colleagues — or ex-colleagues — rating you anonymously and gaining control over whether that next employer wants to hire you? A new social networking site, Unvarnished, thinks you do. Speaking of the power of employee referrals, we revealed how a personal phone call from George Lopez to Conan O’Brien helped Conan decide to sign on to Team TBS.

Lastly, we discussed AOL’s success in employment branding, and why you need to know who you are — and who you aren’t — as an employer.

Here’s some other employment news that’s been making us gasp, cringe, or smile this past month:

  • Sooooo… did we mention our new recruitment e-book is out? We might have.
  • Some companies send you back to school.  Other companies school you on social media best practices, university-style.
  • Why the job hoppers who make you hesitate may actually make the best employees.
  • You’d probably gasp if you got this kind of e-mail from a potential intern. Amirite?
  • The best culture attracts the best talent — here’s 10 ways to get in on the action
  • Top Employee, anyone? Five ways food and restaurants are mixing in an awesome culture.
  • Sometimes, your employees need to feel empowered to get on that bike and fall off. And learn to get back up. And, you know, fall off again.
  • Speaking of bikes, some of you may want to bike to a nearby establishment to see what a  “jobless recovery ale” is like. Taste the happy… ?
  • Would you pay Donatella Versace to judge your skills and that skirtyougotforlike$10shhhh — for charity?

Anything we missed?