October, 2013 Payroll Employment Increases (+204,000); Unemployment Rate Changes Little (7.3%)

Washington, DC—(ENEWSPF)—November 8, 2013. Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 204,000 in October, and the unemployment rate was little changed at 7.3 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Employment increased in leisure and hospitality, retail trade, professional and technical services, manufacturing, and health care.

Household Survey Data

Both the number of unemployed persons, at 11.3 million, and the unemployment rate, at 7.3 percent, changed little in October. Among the unemployed, however, the number who reported being on temporary layoff increased by 448,000. This figure includes furloughed federal employees who were classified as unemployed on temporary layoff under the definitions used in the household survey. (Estimates of the unemployed by reason, such as temporary layoff and job leavers, do not sum to the official seasonally adjusted measure of total unemployed because they are independently seasonally adjusted.) For more information on the classification of workers affected by the federal government shutdown, see the box note. (See tables A-1 and A-11.)

Among the major worker groups, the unemployment rates for adult men (7.0 percent), adult women (6.4 percent), teenagers (22.2 percent), whites (6.3 percent), blacks (13.1 percent), and Hispanics (9.1 percent) showed little or no change in October. The jobless rate for Asians was 5.2 percent (not seasonally adjusted), little changed from a year earlier. (See tables A-1, A-2, and A-3.)

The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks or more) was little changed at 4.1 million in October. These individuals accounted for 36.1 percent of the unemployed. The number of long-term unemployed has declined by 954,000 over the year. (See table A-12.)

The civilian labor force was down by 720,000 in October. The labor force participation rate fell by 0.4 percentage point to 62.8 percent over the month. Total employment as measured by the household survey fell by 735,000 over the month and the employment-population ratio declined by 0.3 percentage point to 58.3 percent. This employment decline partly reflected a decline in federal government employment. (See table A-1.)

The number of persons employed part time for economic reasons (sometimes referred to as involuntary part-time workers) was little changed at 8.1 million in October. These individuals were working part time because their hours had been cut back or because they were unable to find a full-time job. (See table A-8.)

In October, 2.3 million persons were marginally attached to the labor force, little changed from 2.4 million a year earlier. (The data are not seasonally adjusted.) These individuals were not in the labor force, wanted and were available for work, and had looked for a job sometime in the prior 12 months. They were not counted as unemployed because they had not searched for work in the 4 weeks preceding the survey. (See table A-16.)

Among the marginally attached, there were 815,000 discouraged workers in October, essentially unchanged from a year earlier. (The data are not seasonally adjusted.) Discouraged workers are persons not currently looking for work because they believe no jobs are available for them. The remaining 1.5 million persons marginally attached to the labor force in October had not searched for work for reasons such as school attendance or family responsibilities. (See table A-16.)

Establishment Survey Data

Total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 204,000 in October. Job growth averaged 190,000 per month over the prior 12 months. In October, job gains occurred in leisure and hospitality, retail trade, professional and technical services, manufacturing, and health care. Federal government employment continued to trend down. There were no discernible impacts of the partial federal government shutdown on the estimates of employment, hours, and earnings from the establishment survey. (See table B-1.)

Leisure and hospitality employment rose by 53,000 in October. Within the industry, employment in food services and drinking places increased by 29,000, the same as its average monthly gain over the prior 12 months.

Employment in retail trade increased by 44,000 in October, compared with an average monthly gain of 31,000 over the prior 12 months. Job growth was widespread within the industry in October, with gains in food and beverage stores (+12,000), electronics and appliance stores (+10,000), sporting goods and hobby stores (+8,000), general merchandise stores (+8,000), and building material and garden supply stores (+7,000). Clothing and clothing accessories stores lost 13,000 jobs.

Professional and technical services employment rose in October (+21,000) and has grown by 213,000 over the past 12 months. Within the industry, employment in management and technical consulting services rose by 8,000 in October.

Manufacturing added 19,000 jobs in October, with job growth occurring in motor vehicles and parts (+6,000), wood products (+3,000), and furniture and related products (+3,000). On net, manufacturing employment has changed little since February 2013.

Health care employment increased over the month (+15,000). Job growth in health care has averaged 17,000 per month thus far this year, compared with an average monthly gain of 27,000 in 2012.

In October, employment showed little or no change elsewhere in the private sector, including mining and logging, construction, wholesale trade, transportation and warehousing, information, and financial activities.

Federal government employment declined by 12,000 in October. Over the past 12 months, federal government employment has decreased by 94,000. Federal employees on furlough during the partial government shutdown were still considered employed in the payroll survey because they worked or received pay for the pay period that included the 12th of the month. For more information on the classification of workers affected by the partial federal government shutdown, see the box note.

The average workweek for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls was unchanged in October at 34.4 hours. The manufacturing workweek was 40.9 hours, the same as in September, and factory overtime was unchanged at 3.4 hours. The average workweek for production and nonsupervisory employees on private nonfarm payrolls edged down by 0.1 hour to 33.6 hours. (See tables B-2 and B-7.)

In October, average hourly earnings for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls edged up by 2 cents to $24.10. Over the year, average hourly earnings have risen by 52 cents, or 2.2 percent. In October, average hourly earnings of production and nonsupervisory employees edged up by 2 cents to $20.26. (See tables B-3 and B-8.)

The change in total nonfarm payroll employment for August was revised from +193,000 to +238,000, and the change for September was revised from +148,000 to +163,000. With these revisions, employment gains in August and September combined were 60,000 higher than previously reported.

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The Employment Situation for November is scheduled to be released on Friday, December 6, 2013, at 8:30 a.m. (EST).

Partial Federal Government Shutdown

Some agencies of the federal government were shut down or were operating at reduced staffing levels from October 1, 2013, through October 16, 2013. All household and establishment survey operations, including data collection, were suspended during that time period. Shortly after the shutdown ended, October data collection for both surveys began. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) delayed the publication of this release by 1 week to allow enough time to collect data. The reference periods for the surveys were not changed. The response rate for the household survey was within its normal range, and the response rate for the establishment survey was above average.          

In the household survey, individuals are classified as employed, unemployed, or not in the labor force based on their answers to a series of questions about their activities during the survey reference week. Workers who indicate that they were not working during the entire survey reference week and expected to be recalled to their jobs should be classified in the household survey as unemployed on temporary layoff. In October 2013, there was an increase in the number of federal workers who were classified as unemployed on temporary layoff. However, there also was an increase in the number of federal workers who were classified as employed but absent from work. BLS analysis of the data indicates that this group included federal workers affected by the shutdown who also should have been classified as unemployed on temporary layoff. Such a misclassification is an example of nonsampling error and can occur when respondents misunderstand questions or interviewers record answers incorrectly. According to usual practice, the data from the household survey are accepted as recorded. To maintain data integrity, no ad hoc actions taken to reassign survey responses.

It should be noted that household survey data for federal workers are available only on a not seasonally adjusted basis. As a result, over-the-month changes in federal worker data series cannot be compared with seasonally adjusted over-the-month changes in total employed and unemployed.

In the establishment survey, businesses report the number of people who work or receive pay for any part of the pay period that includes the 12th of the month. Persons who work or receive pay for any part of the pay period are defined as employed. This method of classifying workers is the same in all industries, including the federal government. Federal employees on furlough during the partial federal government shutdown were still considered employed in the payroll survey because they worked or  received pay for the pay period that included the 12th of the month.

Additional information is available online at www.bls.gov/bls/shutdown_2013_empsit_qa.pdf.    

Employment Situation Summary Table A. Household data, seasonally adjusted

Employment Situation Summary Table B. Establishment data, seasonally adjusted

Employment Situation Frequently Asked Questions

Employment Situation Technical Note

Table A-1. Employment status of the civilian population by sex and age

Table A-2. Employment status of the civilian population by race, sex, and age

Table A-3. Employment status of the Hispanic or Latino population by sex and age

Table A-4. Employment status of the civilian population 25 years and over by educational attainment

Table A-5. Employment status of the civilian population 18 years and over by veteran status, period of service, and sex, not seasonally adjusted

Table A-6. Employment status of the civilian population by sex, age, and disability status, not seasonally adjusted

Table A-7. Employment status of the civilian population by nativity and sex, not seasonally adjusted

Table A-8. Employed persons by class of worker and part-time status

Table A-9. Selected employment indicators

Table A-10. Selected unemployment indicators, seasonally adjusted

Table A-11. Unemployed persons by reason for unemployment

Table A-12. Unemployed persons by duration of unemployment

Table A-13. Employed and unemployed persons by occupation, not seasonally adjusted

Table A-14. Unemployed persons by industry and class of worker, not seasonally adjusted

Table A-15. Alternative measures of labor underutilization

Table A-16. Persons not in the labor force and multiple jobholders by sex, not seasonally adjusted

Table B-1. Employees on nonfarm payrolls by industry sector and selected industry detail

Table B-2. Average weekly hours and overtime of all employees on private nonfarm payrolls by industry sector, seasonally adjusted

Table B-3. Average hourly and weekly earnings of all employees on private nonfarm payrolls by industry sector, seasonally adjusted

Table B-4. Indexes of aggregate weekly hours and payrolls for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls by industry sector, seasonally adjusted

Table B-5. Employment of women on nonfarm payrolls by industry sector, seasonally adjusted

Table B-6. Employment of production and nonsupervisory employees on private nonfarm payrolls by industry sector, seasonally adjusted (1)

Table B-7. Average weekly hours and overtime of production and nonsupervisory employees on private nonfarm payrolls by industry sector, seasonally adjusted(1)

Table B-8. Average hourly and weekly earnings of production and nonsupervisory employees on private nonfarm payrolls by industry sector, seasonally adjusted(1)

Table B-9. Indexes of aggregate weekly hours and payrolls for production and nonsupervisory employees on private nonfarm payrolls by industry sector, seasonally adjusted(1)

Access to historical data for the “A” tables of the Employment Situation Release

Access to historical data for the “B” tables of the Employment Situation Release

Source: bls.gov