The U.S. economy gained 75,000 jobs in May, and the unemployment rate remained at 3.6%, according to figures released this morning by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Wage growth of 3.1% was lower than last month's 3.4% and, a downward revision of 75,000 for the job numbers for March and April signals that the Federal Reserve's Open Market Committee needs to inch down interest rates.
In response to the May job numbers, AFL-CIO Chief Economist William Spriggs tweeted:
Though payroll gains were modest, they happened in most industries but were most modest for the highest wage industries. Biggest gains were average and low wage industries. @AFLCIO pic.twitter.com/oZumO58wqu— William E. Spriggs (@WSpriggs) June 7, 2019
Amid a not-so-good jobs report from @BLS_gov Black unemployment stops worsening. Black women's unemployment rate falls from 5.3 to 5.1% as labor force participation rose 62.5 to 62.8% @APRI_National @CBTU72 @drjlastword @rolandsmartin @AFLCIO #JobsReport— William E. Spriggs (@WSpriggs) June 7, 2019
Long-term unemployed as a share of the unemployed continues its disturbing rise, now up to 22.4% from January's 19.3. This is a warning that the 151,000 a month payroll growth is too modest. @AFLCIO #JobsReport— William E. Spriggs (@WSpriggs) June 7, 2019
Over the year, since last May, unemployment fell for all major occupations except administrative and office support which rose from 3.3 to 4.0%. Given the wide use of computers by those workers, the unemployment challenge isn't structural. @AFLCIO #JobsReport— William E. Spriggs (@WSpriggs) June 7, 2019
Losses in state government employment (down 10,000) and local government (down 9,000 including 3,100 in education) are continuing worrying signs we are failing to restore public investment to the levels needed for sustained growth. @AFSCME @AFTunion @AFLCIO #JobsReport— William E. Spriggs (@WSpriggs) June 7, 2019
Another sign why a 151,000 payroll gain rate a month is too low: women who were unemployed in April were more likely to have dropped out in May (746,000) than found a job (643,00) a reversal from faster job growth @AFLCIO #JobsDay #JobsReport— William E. Spriggs (@WSpriggs) June 7, 2019
Last month's biggest job gains were in professional and business services (33,000), health care (16,000) and construction (4,000). Employment in other major industries, including mining, manufacturing, wholesale trade, retail trade, transportation and warehousing, information, financial activities, leisure and hospitality, and government, showed little change over the month.
Among the major worker groups, the unemployment rates fell for blacks (6.2%). The unemployment rates for teenagers (12.7%), Hispanics (4.2%), adult men (3.3%), whites (3.3%), adult women (3.2%) and Asians (2.5%) showed little or no change in May.
The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks or more) was little changed in May and accounted for 22.4% of the unemployed.