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May jobs report: Economy adds back 559,000 jobs, unemployment rate fell to 5.8%
The U.S. economy added back another more than half a million jobs in May, with employment accelerating from April but still missing estimates even as the jobless rate slid to a new pandemic-era low.
The U.S. Labor Department released its May jobs report Friday morning at 8:30 a.m. ET. Here were the main metrics from the report, compared to consensus estimates compiled by Bloomberg:
Change in non-farm payrolls: +559,000 vs. +675,000 expected and a revised +278,000 in April
Unemployment rate: 5.8% vs. 5.9% expected and 6.1% in April
Average hourly earnings, month-over-month: 0.5% vs. 0.2% expected and 0.7% in April
Average hourly earnings, year-over-year: 2.0% vs. 1.6% expected and a revised 0.4% in April
Friday’s report also came with revisions to the prior two month’s payroll gains. April’s payrolls were upwardly revised by 12,000 to 278,000, while March’s non-farm payrolls increase was raised to 785,000 from 770,000. Altogether, the U.S. economy is still about 7.6 million jobs short of its pre-pandemic levels from February 2020, and would require more than a year to recoup this deficit at the current pace of job gains.
Some of the industries within the service sector that had been most deeply impacted by the pandemic saw another surge in re-employment during the month. The leisure and hospitality industry added back 292,000 jobs in May on top of 328,000 in April, but is still about 2.7 million jobs short of pre-pandemic levels. Education and health services brought back 87,000 jobs, or more than three times the April gain. Professional and business services, transportation and warehousing, and temporary help services industries swung back to job gains in May after shedding payrolls on net during the prior month.
Jobs in the goods producing sector were up just slightly in May after falling by 36,000 in April. Construction industries shed jobs for a back-to-back month and at an accelerating rate, while manufacturing payrolls swung back to a gain of 23,000 jobs following a loss of 32,000 in April.
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