Employment data points to improving job landscape
The unemployment rate remained essentially unchanged at 7.9 percent in October despite 578,000 people entering the workforce, a hopeful sign for the overall economy.
The unemployment rate increased one tenth of a percentage point from September’s 7.8 percent as 171,000 jobs were added in October. Employment growth has averaged 157,000 per month so far in 2012, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
During the month of October, the labor force participation rate, which measures the percent of the population in the labor force, rose two tenths of a percentage point to 63.8 percent.
Professional and business services (51,000), health care (31,000), retail trade (36,000), leisure and hospitality (28,000) and construction (17,000) all added jobs over the last month, while manufacturing remained largely unchanged, according to the BLS report.
The construction industry’s addition of 17,000 jobs was its largest since January, according to a Reuters report.
The change in payroll employment in August was revised from 142,000 jobs added to 192,000. September’s report was adjusted from 114,000 to 148,000 jobs added.
On Thursday, an ADP National Employment report stated 158,000 jobs were added in October. The increase was the largest increase since February, according to the ADP report.