Washington (AP) — At first glance, the November job report was sour.
US employers have added just 210,000 jobs. This was the lowest monthly profit since December and not half of what economists expected. This meant that employment slowed even before the new Omicron variant of the coronavirus caused measurable damage to the economy.
Still, the overall portrait that emerged from Friday’s job report wasn’t as boring as the headline numbers suggest. The unemployment rate plummeted from 4.6% to 4.2%, approaching what economists consider to be full employment. The Ministry of Labor also revised its September and October employment growth estimates to a total of 82,000 jobs.
For months, the US employment market has steadily recovered from last year’s short but intense pandemic recession. In March and April 2020, employers cut 22 million jobs as the government ordered a blockade and consumers moved home to avoid infection.
Since then, employers have increased the employment of about 18.5 million people. Huge government spending and widespread deployment of vaccines have fostered economic activity towards pre-pandemic norms.
Still, the United States maintains 3.9 million jobs, below the February 2020 situation. Omicron can also put pressure on the economy by discouraging consumers from shopping and eating out, temporarily closing factories and ports, and exacerbating bottlenecks. In the production and shipping of goods.
Here are five points from the November job report:
Unemployment has fallen, and for the right reason
The decline in the unemployment rate was particularly encouraging.
The unemployment rate can drop for the wrong reason. People are discouraged and stop looking for a job and are no longer classified as unemployed. (The government does not count people as unemployed if they are not looking for a job.)
But last month the opposite happened. Many started looking for a job and were hired.
Stephen Stanley, Chief Economist at Amherst Pierpont Securities, said:
The workforce (the number of Americans who have or are looking for a job) increased by 594,000 in November, the highest since October 2020. The number of people who say they have been hired has skyrocketed by more than 1.1 million. And the unemployed rank has dropped by 542,000.
Overall, the percentage of Americans working or looking for a job, the so-called workforce participation rate, has risen to 61.8%, the highest percentage since March 2020.
Two surveys, two stories
Why was the increase in work last month so disappointing when the unemployment situation became so bright?
Amherst Pierpont’s Stanley calls last month’s employment report “one of the most confusing things I’ve ever seen.”
The Ministry of Labor is conducting two separate surveys. One study identifies the number of jobs an employer has added based on salary. Another survey of households determines the unemployment rate. The two studies may tell different stories in the same month, but the differences usually narrow over time.
In payroll surveys, the government mainly asks large corporations and agencies how many people they hired during the month.
But to determine unemployment, it calls the household and asks if the adults living there are working. Someone who has no job but is looking for one as an unemployed person.
Unlike household surveys, household surveys target agricultural workers, self-employed people, and people working in new companies. It also does a better job of getting employment in small businesses.
However, household surveys are probably less accurate. The Ministry of Labor is investigating only 60,000 households. This is far less than the 145,000 private and government employers surveyed for salary reports.
Stanley believes salary increases were sluggish last month, largely because employers couldn’t find enough workers to fill the record-breaking 10.4 million jobs in September. Stated.
Delayed adoption in hotels and restaurants
Leisure and hospitality companies that were hit hard by last year’s pandemic hired most of the year, increasing 242,000 jobs a month by October. But last month, their recruitment growth plummeted to just 23,000. This was the lowest since January and contributed to the sluggish growth of the entire employment market.
The hotel has added less than 7,000 jobs, the weakest increase since January. Restaurants and bars that added more than 154,000 jobs a month until October this year were added to just 11,000 in November.
Andrew Hunter, senior US economist at Capital Economics, suspects that the slowdown in recruitment in November may be partly related to the “early winter wave of viral infections.”
E-commerce boosts warehousing and transportation
Employment in warehousing and shipping companies is booming. Last month, nearly 50,000 jobs increased. The growth of that job reflects the shift from traditional retail stores to e-commerce. This is a shift where the pandemic is accelerating.
Warehouse and transportation jobs are already 4% above pre-pandemic levels in February 2020. In contrast, retail employment fell by more than 20,000 last month, down 1% from before the pandemic.
Warehouses and truck companies are scrambling to meet customer demand. This trend is the result of home consumers, who often inflate their bank accounts with government pandemic relief checks and order lawn furniture, electronics and other merchandise online.
Brightened employment photos for all races
Unemployment rates for all races fell to low pandemics last month.
The unemployment rate for African Americans has dropped from 7.9% to 6.7%, with a mix of good and bad reasons. 97,000 African-Americans have dropped out of the workforce and are no longer counted as unemployed. Still, overall black employment increased by 169,000.
The Hispanic unemployment rate has dropped from 5.9% to 5.2%. This is because the rank of Hispanics employed has skyrocketed to 502,000, the largest monthly increase since October 2020.
The unemployment rate for white workers has dropped from 4% to 3.7%. White employment increased by 647,000 last month, the highest since July.
Suggest a fix
Explainer: Five Key Points from the November Job Report | WGN Radio 720
Source link Explainer: Five Key Points from the November Job Report | WGN Radio 720