chart via BLS
The U.S. lost jobs for the fifth
consecutive month, as nonfarm payroll employment continued to trend down. For May 2008, -49,000. Unemployment rose by 861,000 to 8.5 million, jumping half a percent to 5.5% — the sharpest one month gain in
22 33 years. One year earlier, the jobless rate was 4.5%.
U-6, the broadest measure of Unemployment, jumped to 9.7%.
The Household survey showed employment fell by 285,000 while unemployment rose by 861,000 by the most in more than two
decades. Bloomberg described this as "signaling that the world’s largest economy is stalling."
Other noteworthy data points:
-The average workweek was unchanged at 33.7
-Average hourly earnings rose by 5 cents, or 0.3 percent, and up just 3.5% from a year earlier;
-Birth/Death model added 217k to the employed (not monthly) total vs 174k in May ’07. (meaning, expect further revisions lower in the future)
-BLS B/D estimated an add of 42k construction jobs, 9k financial jobs — hard to believe in the current environment;
-Previous month revisions were lower by 15k;
-Unemployment rate jumped to 0.4% more than expected;
-The labor force rose, as reentrants (326,000) and new entrants (204,000) added to the labor force in May.
Expect the recent "no recession" consensus to come under additional pressure in the coming weeks. . .
THE EMPLOYMENT SITUATION: MAY 2008
June 6, 2008
CES Net Birth/Death Model