The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported today (10-8-21) that total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 194,000 in September. This follows an increase of 235,000 in August, a revised 1.1 million in July, and a revised 962,000 increase in June. Nonfarm payroll employment has increased by 17.4 million since April 2020 but is down by -5.0 million, or -3.3%, from its pre-pandemic level in February 2020.
In September, notable job gains occurred in leisure and hospitality, professional and business services, retail trade, and transportation and warehousing. Employment in public education, however, declined during the month. Construction employment rose by 22,000 but has shown little net change thus far this year. Employment in construction is -201,000 below its February 2020 level.
The unemployment rate dropped -0.4% to 4.8%, and the number of unemployed persons declined by -710,000 to 7.7 million. Both 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).
FEA compiles the Wood Markets News from various 3rd party sources to provide readers with the latest news impacting forest product markets. Opinions or views expressed in these articles do not necessarily represent those of FEA.
THE EMPLOYMENT SITUATION — SEPTEMBER 2021