On Friday the Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported in its January 2013 Employment Situation Summary that 157,000 net non-farm payroll jobs were added to the U.S. economy in January.
Meanwhile, the unemployment rate rose slightly by 0.1% to 7.9% from December’s initial report and despite revised job growth numbers in November and December which were better than initially calculated. However, January’s unemployment increase appears to be due to a positive reason: a major influx of marginally attached and discouraged workers back into the labor force.
The private sector gained a total of 166,400 net jobs in the month. The most significant gains were in the construction sector, the health services subsector, the professional and business services sector, and the retail trade sector. The biggest loser was the transportation and warehousing sector.
The government sector lost 9,000 net jobs with the largest loss occurring within local governments, particularly in the education subsector.
January marked the 35th consecutive month of job growth within the private sector.
In addition, the November and December numbers of net increases in non-farm jobs were also revised from +161,000 to +247,000 and from +155,000 to +196,000, respectively.
At approximately 804,000 the number of discouraged workers, those who have stopped searching for employment because they do not believe there is a job opportunity available for them, decreased dramatically by 255,000 from its January 2012 level. The number of workers marginally attached to the labor force, those who had looked for employment over the past 12 months but had not done so over the past four weeks, dropped by 366,000 from January 2012 to 2.4 million.
The number of long-term unemployed, those out of work for longer than 27 weeks, had little change at 4.7 million. 38.1% of persons who were unemployed in January were within the long-term unemployed category.
In January there were 8.0 million involuntarily part-time workers, those that are part time due to the economic situation forcing their hours to be cut back or their inability to find full time employment, changed little as well.
Following is an approximate breakdown of net job growth within the major private industry sectors and the government sector for January:
• Construction: +28,000
• Financial Activities: +6,000
• Education and Health Services: +25,000
• Information: +9,000
• Leisure and Hospitality: +23,000
• Manufacturing: +4,000
• Mining and Logging: +4,000
• Other Services: +8,000
• Professional and Business Services: +25,000
• Retail: +32,600
• Transportation and Warehousing: -14,200
• Utilities: +1,200
• Wholesale Trade: +14,800
• Government: -9,000
Overall, the average work week for private sector non-farm jobs remained at 34.4 hours, while the manufacturing sector average work week decreased slightly by 0.1 hours to 40.6 hours. The average hourly earnings for all private non-farm employees rose by 4 cents to $23.78.
White House Council of Economic Advisers Chairman Alan Krueger stated Friday in his blog on whitehouse.gov,
“While more work remains to be done, today’s employment report provides further evidence that the U.S. economy is continuing to heal from the wounds inflicted by the worst downturn since the Great Depression. It is critical that we pursue the policies needed to build an economy that works for the middle class as we continue to dig our way out of the deep hole that was caused by the severe recession that began in December 2007.
Today’s report is a reminder of the importance of the need for Congress to act to avoid self-inflicted wounds to the economy. The Administration continues to urge Congress to move toward a sustainable Federal budget in a responsible way that balances revenue and spending, and replaces the sequester, while making critical investments in the economy that promote growth and job creation and protect our most vulnerable citizens.”
Krueger, Alan. “The Employment Situation in January.” whitehouse.gov. The White House. 1 February 2013. Web. 1 February 2013.
The “February 2013 Employment Situation Summary” will be released on Friday, March 8, 2013.
Employment Data Source:
“Employment Situation Summary.” bls.gov. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. 1 February 2013. Web. 1 February 2013.