August Employment Report: 1.4 Million Jobs Added, 8.4% Unemployment Rate

From the BLS:

Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 1.4 million in August, and the unemployment rate fell to 8.4 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. These improvements in the labor market reflect the continued resumption of economic activity that had been curtailed due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and efforts to contain it. In August, an increase in government employment largely reflected temporary hiring for the 2020 Census.

In August, the unemployment rate declined by 1.8 percentage points to 8.4 percent, and the number of unemployed persons fell by 2.8 million to 13.6 million. Both measures have declined for 4 consecutive months but are higher than in February, by 4.9 percentage points and 7.8 million, respectively.

The change in total nonfarm payroll employment for June was revised down by 10,000, from +4,791,000 to +4,781,000, and the change for July was revised down by 29,000, from +1,763,000 to +1,734,000. With these revisions, employment in June and July combined was 39,000 less than previously reported.
emphasis added

Year-over-year change employmentClick on graph for larger image.

The first graph shows the year-over-year change in total non-farm employment since 1968.

In August, the year-over-year change was negative 10.25 million jobs.

Total payrolls increased by 1.4 million in August.

Payrolls for June and July were revised down 39 thousand combined.

Employment Recessions, Scariest Job ChartThe second graph shows the job losses from the start of the employment recession, in percentage terms.

The current employment recession is by far the worst recession since WWII in percentage terms, and the worst in terms of the unemployment rate.

The third graph shows the employment population ratio and the participation rate.

Employment Pop Ratio, participation and unemployment ratesThe Labor Force Participation Rate increased to 61.7% in August. This is the percentage of the working age population in the labor force.

The Employment-Population ratio increased to 56.5% (black line).

I’ll post the 25 to 54 age group employment-population ratio graph later.

unemployment rateThe fourth graph shows the unemployment rate.

The unemployment rate decreased in August to 8.4%.

This was at consensus expectations of 1.4 million jobs added, and June and July were revised down by 39,000 combined.

I’ll have much more later …

Join the Discussion

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top