The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) is reporting today (9-3-21) that total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 235,000 in August, following a revised 1.1 million in July, and a revised 962,000 increase in June. Nonfarm payroll employment has increased by 17.0 million since April 2020 but is down by -5.3 million, or -3.5%, from its pre-pandemic level in February 2020.
In August, notable job gains occurred in professional and business services, transportation and warehousing, private education, manufacturing and other services. In July, the unemployment rate declined by -0.2% to 5.2%, and the number of unemployed persons edged lower to 8.4 million, following a substantial decrease in July. These measures are down considerably from their highs at the end of the February-April 2020 recession. However, they remain well above their levels prior to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic (3.5 percent and 5.7 million, respectively, in February 2020. The BLS is reporting that employment showed little change in construction and wholesale trade in August.
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THE EMPLOYMENT SITUATION — AUGUST 2021