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U.S. Unemployment Rate Unchanged At 3.7%

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics


Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 164,000 in July, and the unemployment
rate was unchanged at 3.7 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported
today. Notable job gains occurred in professional and technical services,
health care, social assistance, and financial activities.

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. For more information about the concepts and statistical
methodology used in these two surveys, see the Technical Note.

Household Survey Data

The unemployment rate held at 3.7 percent in July, and the number of unemployed
persons was little changed at 6.1 million. (See table A-1.)

Among the major worker groups, the unemployment rate for Asians increased to
2.8 percent in July. The jobless rates for adult men (3.4 percent), adult women
(3.4 percent), teenagers (12.8 percent), Whites (3.3 percent), Blacks (6.0
percent), and Hispanics (4.5 percent) showed little or no change over the month.
(See tables A-1, A-2, and A-3.)

In July, the number of persons unemployed less than 5 weeks increased by 240,000
to 2.2 million, while the number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27
weeks or more) declined by 248,000 to 1.2 million. The long-term unemployed
accounted for 19.2 percent of the unemployed. (See table A-12.)

In July, the labor force participation rate was 63.0 percent, and the employment-
population ratio was 60.7 percent. Both measures were little changed over the
month and over the year. (See table A-1.)

The number of persons employed part time for economic reasons (sometimes referred
to as involuntary part-time workers) declined by 363,000 in July to 4.0 million.
These individuals, who would have preferred full-time employment, were working
part time because their hours had been reduced or they were unable to find full-
time jobs. Over the past 12 months, the number of involuntary part-time workers
has declined by 604,000. (See table A-8.)

In July, 1.5 million persons were marginally attached to the labor force,
essentially unchanged 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. (See table A-16.)

Among the marginally attached, there were 368,000 discouraged workers in July,
down by 144,000 from a year earlier. (Data are not seasonally adjusted.)
Discouraged workers are persons not currently looking for work because they
believe no jobs are available for them. The remaining 1.1 million persons
marginally attached to the labor force in July had not searched for work for
reasons such as school attendance or family responsibilities. (See table A-16.)

Establishment Survey Data

Total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 164,000 in July, in line with
average employment growth in the first 6 months of the year. In 2018, employment
gains had averaged 223,000 per month. In July, notable job gains occurred in
professional and technical services (+31,000), health care (+30,000), social
assistance (+20,000), and financial activities (+18,000). (See table B-1.)

Professional and technical services added 31,000 jobs in July, bringing the
12-month job gain to 300,000. In July, employment increased by 11,000 in computer
systems design and related services; this industry accounted for about one-third
of employment growth in professional and technical services both over the month
and over the year.

Employment in health care rose by 30,000 over the month, reflecting a gain in
ambulatory health care services (+29,000). Health care employment has increased
by 405,000 over the year, with ambulatory health care services accounting for
about two-thirds of the gain.

Social assistance added 20,000 jobs in July. Employment in this industry has
increased by 143,000 over the year.

In July, financial activities employment rose by 18,000, with most of the gain
occurring in insurance carriers and related activities (+11,000).

Mining employment declined by 5,000 in July, after showing little net change
in recent months.

Manufacturing employment changed little in July (+16,000) and thus far in 2019.
Job gains in the industry had averaged 22,000 per month in 2018.

Employment in other major industries, including construction, wholesale trade,
retail trade, transportation and warehousing, information, leisure and hospitality,
and government, changed little over the month.

In July, average hourly earnings for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls
rose by 8 cents to $27.98, following an 8-cent gain in June. Over the past 12
months, average hourly earnings have increased by 3.2 percent. In July, average
hourly earnings of private-sector production and nonsupervisory employees rose
by 4 cents to $23.46.  (See tables B-3 and B-8.)

The average workweek for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls decreased by
0.1 hour to 34.3 hours in July. In manufacturing, the average workweek decreased
by 0.3 hour to 40.4 hours, and overtime declined by 0.2 hour to 3.2 hours. The
average workweek of private-sector production and nonsupervisory employees
declined by 0.1 hour to 33.5 hours. (See tables B-2 and B-7.)

The change in total nonfarm payroll employment for May was revised down by 10,000
from +72,000 to +62,000, and the change for June was revised down by 31,000 from
+224,000 to +193,000. With these revisions, employment gains in May and June
combined were 41,000 less 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 +140,000 per month over the last 3 months.

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