Economy Gains 2.5 Million Jobs in May; Unemployment Declines to 13.3%

The U.S. economy gained 2.5 million jobs in May, and the unemployment rate declined 13.3%, according to figures released Friday morning by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The improvements reflect a limited resumption of economic activity that was previously curtailed because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

In response to the May job numbers, AFL-CIO Chief Economist William Spriggs tweeted:

Last month's biggest job gains were in leisure and hospitality (1.2 million), construction (464,000), education and health services (424,000), retail (368,000), other services (272,000), manufacturing (225,000), professional and business services (127,000), financial activities (33,000), and wholesale trade (21,000). The biggest job losses were in government (-585,000), information (-38,000), mining (-20,000), and transportation and warehousing (-19,000).

In May, the unemployment rates declined for Hispanics (17.6%), adult women (13.9%), whites (12.4%) and adult men (11.6%). The jobless rates for teenagers (29.9%), blacks (16.8%) and Asians (15.0%) showed little change over the month.

The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks or more) increased in May and accounted for 5.6% of the unemployed.