Foodservice Equipment Reports

Jobs Growth A Bit Better than Expected In September

It was hardly a surge but nonfarm payrolls in the United States grew by 103,000 in September, according to data released Friday, Oct. 7, by the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics. The numbers beat most analysts’ expectations and helped ease fears of another round of recession. The unemployment rate held steady at 9.1%. The numbers in July and August were also revised upwards by nearly 100,000.

Jobs growth was centered in professional and business services, health care and construction. Most other segments, including leisure and hospitality and manufacturing, were flat or lost jobs. Government lost another 34,000 workers and the U.S. Postal Service saw a 5,000 reduction in total employment. Local governments have shed 535,000 employees since the recession began during the fall of 2008. The return of 45,000 Verizon workers from a short strike also helped the numbers.

The number of unemployed persons remained at 14 million in September. The number of under-employed actually rose during the month to 9.3 million. The unemployment rate has held in a narrow range between 9% and 9.2% since April.

Most economists expect employment growth to remain sluggish for the foreseeable future. The consensus forecasts from the 50 leading economic forecasting group polled monthly by Blue Chip Economic Indicators has average unemployment remaining at 9% next year and only dropping to 8.3% in 2013.

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