Decent May Jobs Report

Posted by AzBlueMeanie:

Steven Benen provides the monthly jobs report, Job growth improves, 175k jobs added in May:

Expectations going into this morning's jobs report were that the
economy added about 160,000 jobs in May, which would be a slight
decrease from April. The new figures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics were actually a little more encouraging than that.

The
U.S. economy added 175,000 jobs in May, slightly better than expected,
though the overall unemployment rate inched higher to 7.6%. (Update: Remember that these minor increases aren't always
bad news, and occasionally, they're sign of an improving jobs
landscape.) As is usually the case, there was a gap between the two
major sectors — America's private sector added 178,000 jobs last month,
while spending cuts caused the public sector lose 3,000 jobs.

One
key figure to keep in mind, however, was local-government hiring, where
13,000 jobs were created. We've grown accustomed to municipalities
doing the opposite, and if this holds up (and continues), it will
strengthen the overall job market. (Update: On the other hand,
federal hiring declined by 45,000 over the last three months, suggesting
that Congress' sequestration budget cuts are doing what they were
intended to do — hurting the economy
.)

May's totals are, of
course, preliminary, and will be revised. Indeed, the revisions from
March and April were a mixed bag — totals from March were revised up a
bit, from 142,000 to 138,000, while April's figures were revised down
rather significantly, from 165,000 to 149,000.

All told, job
creation in May was the best we've seen since February and marks the
39th consecutive month of [private sector] job growth. For the first five months of the
calendar year, the economy has added 946,000 jobs overall, and 972,000
in the private sector.

MayJobs

Here's another chart, this one showing monthly job losses/gains in just the private sector since the start of the Great Recession.

MayPrivateJobs

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