New Job Numbers: Slowed Gains, Unemployment Down, No California Numbers
Not bad news, but a big side note to the latest jobs numbers:
The final jobs report before the general election shows a gain of just 661,000 jobs for September and the unemployment fell from 8.4 percent to 7.9 percent, according to data released Friday by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Over the summer the unemployment rate fell from its lockdown spike of 14.7 percent to 8.4 percent by August, but the pace of gains has drastically slowed, pointing toward a protracted period of fragile recovery that could be further imperiled if infection rates worsen.
It’s a “steady flood of job loss,” said Bill Scribbs, an economist for the AFL-CIO labor union. “The next six months… look pretty bad because what happened in August with people using so much credit is they’re going to be reticent to spend money by Christmas. We won’t have enough jobs back by November.”
The data for the monthly jobs report comes from a survey of workers conducted the week of the 12th of the prior month. Fresher data shows scant signs of economic recovery. Initial jobless claims this week were about 837,000, a number the country has hovered around since lockdowns lifted.
Smaller employers are having difficulty holding on and we are now seeing the effect of the big company layoffs.
“We are still experiencing eye-watering levels of conventional claims,” Daniel Alpert, senior fellow in financial macroeconomics at Cornell Law School, told NBC News in an email. “Smaller employers are having difficulty holding on and we are now seeing the effect of the big company layoffs.”
Due to wildfire disruptions, data in this jobs report is not updated for California, which has said it has a backlog of 600,000 claims and over 1 million claims.