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News : US Economy Last Updated: Oct 8, 2012 - 6:46 AM

US adds 114,000 jobs in September; Unemployment rate falls to 7.8%
By Finfacts Team
Oct 5, 2012 - 2:49 PM

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The US unemployment rate declined by 0.3 percentage point to 7.8% in September, and nonfarm payroll employment increased by 114,000. In 2012, job gains have averaged 146,000 per month, compared with 153,000 per month in 2011.

In September, health care employment rose by 44,000, largely in ambulatory health care services. Over the last 12 months, health care employment has risen by 295,000.

Transportation and warehousing employment increased by 17,000 in September. Employment in this industry has risen by 104,000 over the year.

Manufacturing employment edged down over the month (-16,000), with declines in computer and electronic products (-6,000) and in printing and related activities (-3,000). On net, manufacturing employment has been unchanged since April.

Employment in temporary help services was essentially unchanged in September and August. During the prior 12 months, the industry had added an average of 20,000 jobs per month. Employment in financial activities edged up in September (+13,000), reflecting modest gains in credit intermediation (+6,000) and real estate (+7,000). Employment in other major industries changed little in September.

Average hourly earnings of all employees on private nonfarm payrolls rose by 7 cents in September to $23.58. Over the past 12 months, average hourly earnings have risen by 1.8%. From August 2011 to August 2012, the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) increased by 1.7%.

Turning to measures from the survey of households, the unemployment rate decreased by 0.3 percentage point to 7.8%t in September. For the first 8 months of the year, the rate held in a narrow range of 8.1 to 8.3%. The number of unemployed persons declined by 456,000 to 12.1 million in September. There was a large decrease (-206,000) in unemployment among 20- to 24-year-olds. Among all unemployed persons, the proportion who had been jobless for 27 weeks or longer was 40.1%, essentially unchanged from the prior month but down from 44.7% a year earlier.

Total employment, as measured by the household survey, rose by 873,000 in September, following 3 months of little change. On a month-to-month basis, the household survey employment measure is more variable than the payroll employment measure due to the smaller household survey sample. Over longer periods, the changes in household and payroll survey employment tend to track more closely.

In September, employment of persons age 20 to 24 years rose by 368,000. The September gain for this group follows a decline in August. Over the 2-month period, employment for 20- to 24- year-olds was little changed.

The employment-population ratio rose 0.4 percentage point in September to 58.7%, following 2 months in which the ratio had edged down. The overall trend in the employment-population ratio for this year has been flat. The labor force participation rate was little changed in September. Like the employment- population ratio, the labor force participation rate has been essentially flat in 2012.

Among the employed, the number of involuntary part time workers increased by 582,000 to 8.6 million in September.

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