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Wednesday, November 20, 2019
HomeNewsEconomyUnemployment Rate Falls to Lowest Level Since 1969, U.S. Adds 136K in September

Unemployment Rate Falls to Lowest Level Since 1969, U.S. Adds 136K in September

Series with themes reflecting a certain billionaire politician who won the 2016 presidential election touting a very strong labor market. (Photo: AdobeStock)

Black, Hispanic Unemployment Rates at All-Time Lows

The U.S. unemployment rate in September fell to 3.5%, the lowest level since December 1969, and total nonfarm payrolls increased by 136,000. The unemployment rate for black (5.5%) and Hispanic (3.9%) workers are at record lows.

Forecasters were expecting a low of 120,000 to a high of 179,000. The consensus forecast was 145,000. However, the U.S. economy added more than 40,000 jobs than the last two jobs reports indicated.

PriorPrior RevisedConsensus ForecastForecast RangeActual
Nonfarm Payrolls – M/M ∆130,000 168,000 145,000 120,000  to 179,000 136,000 
Unemployment Rate – Level3.7%3.7%3.6% to 3.8%3.5%
Private Payrolls – M/M ∆96,000 122,000 135,000 105,000  to 166,000 114,000 
Manufacturing Payrolls – M/M ∆3,000 2.000 3,000 -12,000  to 6,000 -2.000 
Participation Rate – level63.2%63.1%63.0% to 63.2%63.2%
Average Hourly Earnings – M/M ∆0.4%0.3%0.2% to 0.3%0.0%
Average Hourly Earnings – Y/Y ∆3.2%3.2%3.1% to 3.4%2.9%
Av Workweek – All Employees34.4 hrs34.4 hrs34.4 hrs to 34.5 hrs34.4 hrs

The labor force participation rate held steady at a very positive 63.2%, beating the consensus forecast expecting a 0.1% decline. The employment-population ratio, though little changed at 61.0% for September, has now been up by 0.6% for the year.

Of those unemployed, the number of job losers and persons who completed temporary jobs fell by 304,000 to 2.6 million in September, while the number of new entrants rose by 103,000 to 677,000.

New entrants are unemployed persons who never previously worked.

Average hourly earnings (AHEs), or wages, have increased by 2.9% over the previous 12 months. It had been at or above 3% for 13 consecutive months.

The change in total nonfarm payroll employment for July was revised up by 7,000 from +159,000 to +166,000, and the change for August was revised up by 38,000 from +130,000 to +168,000.

“The September jobs report is a very solid report,” Tim Anderson, analyst at TJM Investments at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), said. “While it may be a touch below the ‘in print’ consensus, many were expecting a headline number below 100,000 after the negative data earlier in the week.”

With these revisions, employment gains in July and August combined were 45,000 more than previously reported.

“With the labor force participation rate holding above 63% and the solid upward revision to August and July combined, this was a very positive report,” Mr. Anderson added. “115,000 of those jobs were in the private sector.”

Worth noting, the Challenger, Gray & Christmas Job-Cut Report released earlier this week for September came in at 41,557, down from nearly 60,000 in August. It was a positive sign for the Employment Situation.

Correction: A previous version of this story incorrectly stated the last date the Total U.S. Civilian Unemployment Rate was 3.5%. It stated May 1948, a month in which it was indeed 3.5%. But the most recent date is December 1968. We apologize to readers for this error and have corrected the date. A post that appeared on Twitter was captured via screenshot, deleted and corrected for the record.

Written by
Staff Writing Group

PPD Business, the economy-reporting arm of People's Pundit Daily, is "making sense of current events." We are a no-holds barred, news reporting pundit of, by, and for the people.

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    unemployment rate was under 3% in the Korean War

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