US Notes 263K New Jobs Verses 190K
May 3, 2019
nonfarm payroll employment increased by 263,000 in April, and the
unemployment rate declined to 3.6 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor
Statistics reported today. Notable job gains occurred in professional
and business services, construction, health care, and social assistance.
This news release presents statistics from two monthly surveys. The
household survey measures labor force status, including unemployment, by
demographic characteristics. The establishment survey measures nonfarm
employment, hours, and earnings by industry.
Household Survey Data
The unemployment rate declined by 0.2 percentage point to 3.6 percent in
April, the lowest rate since December 1969. Over the month, the number
of unemployed persons decreased by 387,000 to 5.8 million.
Among the major worker groups, the unemployment rates declined in April
for adult men (3.4 percent), adult women (3.1 percent), Whites
(3.1percent), Asians (2.2 percent), and Hispanics (4.2 percent). The
jobless rates for teenagers (13.0 percent) and Blacks (6.7 percent)
showed little or no change.
Among the unemployed, the number of
job losers and persons who completed temporary jobs declined by 186,000
over the month to 2.7 million.
In April, the number of persons
unemployed less than 5 weeks declined by 222,000 to 1.9 million. The
number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks or more) was
little changed at 1.2 million in April and accounted for 21.1 percent of
The labor force participation rate declined by 0.2 percentage point to
62.8 percent in April but was unchanged from a year earlier. The
employment- population ratio was unchanged at 60.6 percent in April and
has been either
60.6 percent or 60.7 percent since October 2018.
The number of persons employed part time for economic reasons (sometimes
referred to as involuntary part-time workers) was little changed at 4.7
million in April. These individuals, who would have preferred full-time
employment, were working part time because their hours had been reduced
or because they were unable to find full-time jobs.
In April, 1.4 million persons were marginally attached to the labor
force, little different from a year earlier. (Data are not seasonally
adjusted.) These individuals were not in the labor force, wanted and
were available for work, and had looked for a job sometime in the prior
12 months. They were not counted as unemployed because they had not
searched for work in the 4 weeks preceding the survey.
Among the marginally attached, there were 454,000 discouraged workers in
April, about unchanged from a year earlier. (Data are not seasonally
Discouraged workers are persons not
currently looking for work because they believe no jobs are available
for them. The remaining 963,000 persons marginally attached to the labor
force in April had not searched for work for
reasons such as school attendance or family responsibilities.
Establishment Survey Data
Total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 263,000 in April, compared
with an average monthly gain of 213,000 over the prior 12 months. In
April, notable jobs gains occurred in professional and business
services, construction, health care, and social assistance.
Professional and business services added 76,000 jobs in April. Within
the industry, employment gains occurred in administrative and support
services (+53,000) and in computer systems design and related services
(+14,000). Over the past 12 months, professional and business services
has added 535,000 jobs.
In April, construction employment rose by 33,000, with gains in
nonresidential specialty trade contractors (+22,000) and in heavy and
civil engineering construction (+10,000). Construction has added 256,000
jobs over the past 12
Employment in health care grew by 27,000 in April and 404,000 over the
past 12 months. In April, job growth occurred in ambulatory health care
services (+17,000), hospitals (+8,000), and community care facilities
for the elderly (+7,000).
Social assistance added 26,000 jobs over the month, with all of the gain
in individual and family services.
Financial activities employment continued to trend up in April
(+12,000). The industry has added 110,000 jobs over the past 12 months,
with almost three- fourths of the growth in real estate and rental and
Manufacturing employment changed little for the third month in a row
(+4,000 in April). In the 12 months prior to February, the industry had
added an average of 22,000 jobs per month.
Employment in retail trade changed little in April (-12,000). Job losses
occurred in general merchandise stores (-9,000), while motor vehicle and
parts dealers added 8,000 jobs.
Employment in other major industries, including mining, wholesale trade,
transportation and warehousing, information, leisure and hospitality,
and government, showed little change over the month.
April, average hourly earnings for all employees on private nonfarm
payrolls rose by 6 cents to $27.77. Over the year, average hourly
earnings have increased by 3.2 percent. Average hourly earnings of
private-sector production and nonsupervisory employees increased by 7
cents to $23.31 in April.
The average workweek for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls
decreased by 0.1 hour to 34.4 hours in April. In manufacturing, both the
workweek and overtime were unchanged (40.7 hours and 3.4 hours,
respectively). The average workweek for production and nonsupervisory
employees on private nonfarm payrolls held at 33.7 hours.
The change in total nonfarm payroll employment for February was revised
up from +33,000 to +56,000, and the change for March was revised down
from +196,000 to +189,000. With these revisions, employment gains in
February and March combined were 16,000 more than previously reported.
(Monthly revisions result from additional reports received from
businesses and government agencies since the last published estimates
and from the recalculation of seasonal factors.) After revisions, job
gains have averaged 169,000 per month over the
last 3 months.