Unemployment rate unchanged in June, although 80,000 jobs gained

Online Staff Report

The national unemployment rate remained at 8.2 percent while 80,000 jobs were added in June, according to a report released July 6 by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Professional and business services added jobs, and employment in other major industries changed little over the month, according to the report. However, the number of unemployed people — 12.7 million — was unchanged in June.

Speaking at a campaign event in Ohio July 6, President Barack Obama said: “We learned this morning that our businesses created 84,000 new jobs last month. And that, overall, means that businesses have created 4.4 million new jobs over the past 28 months, including 500,000 new manufacturing jobs. That’s a step in the right direction.”

Meantime, at a press conference July 6, presumptive Republican nominee for president, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney called the unemployment rate “unacceptably high” and repeatedly referred to the jobs report as a “kick in the gut.”

In any jobs figures, there are going to be factors that come and go that you can’t control, but the things you can control you want to get right,” Romney said. “In the case of President Obama, this is not a monthly statistic or even a yearly statistic. We’ve looked at now almost four years of policies that have not gotten America working again.”

Locally, at 10.4 percent in May, the Rockford metropolitan area had the highest unemployment rate of all metropolitan areas in the state. Statewide statistics for June will be released Thursday, July 19, and metropolitan statistics will be released Thursday, July 26.

According to the July 6 U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics report, among the major worker groups, the unemployment rate for blacks (14.4 percent) edged up over the month, while the rates for adult men (7.8 percent), adult women (7.4 percent), teen-agers (23.7 percent), whites (7.4 percent) and Hispanics (11.0 percent) showed little or no change. The jobless rate for Asians was 6.3 percent in June (not seasonally adjusted), little changed from a year earlier.

In June, the number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks and longer) was essentially unchanged at 5.4 million. These individuals accounted for 41.9 percent of the unemployed.

Both the civilian labor force participation rate and the employment-population ratio were unchanged in June at 63.8 and 58.6 percent, respectively.

The number of people employed part-time for economic reasons (sometimes referred to as involuntary part-time workers) was essentially unchanged at 8.2 million. These individuals were working part-time because their hours had been cut back or because they were unable to find a full-time job.

In June, 2.5 million people were marginally attached to the labor force, down from 2.7 million a year earlier. (These 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 four weeks preceding the survey.

Among the marginally attached, there were 821,000 discouraged workers in June, a decline of 161,000 from a year earlier. (These data are not seasonally adjusted.) Discouraged workers are people not currently looking for work because they believe no jobs are available for them.

The remaining 1.7 million people marginally attached to the labor force in June had not searched for work in the four weeks preceding the survey for reasons such as school attendance or family responsibilities.

In the second quarter, employment growth averaged 75,000 per month, compared with an average monthly gain of 226,000 for the first quarter of the year. Slower job growth in the second quarter occurred in most major industries.

Professional and business services added 47,000 jobs in June, with temporary help services accounting for 25,000 of the increase. Employment also rose in management and technical consulting services (plus 9,000) and in computer systems design and related services (plus 7,000). Employment in professional and business services has grown by 1.5 million since its most recent low point in September 2009.

Employment in manufacturing continued to edge up in June (plus 11,000).

Growth in the second quarter averaged 10,000 per month, compared with an average of 41,000 per month during the first quarter. In June, employment increased in motor vehicles and parts (plus 7,000) and in fabricated metal products (plus 5,000).

Employment continued to trend up in health care (plus 13,000) and wholesale trade (plus 9,000) in June.

Employment in other major industries, including mining and logging, construction, retail trade, transportation and warehousing, financial activities, leisure and hospitality, and government, showed little or no change.

The average work week for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls edged up by 0.1 hour to 34.5 hours in June. The manufacturing work week edged up by 0.1 hour to 40.7 hours, and factory overtime was 3.3 hours for the fifth consecutive month. The average workweek for production and non-supervisory employees on private nonfarm payrolls edged up by 0.1 hour to 33.8 hours.

In June, average hourly earnings for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls increased by 6 cents to $23.50. Over the year, average hourly earnings have increased by 2 percent. In June, average hourly earnings of private-sector production and non-supervisory employees increased by 5 cents to $19.74.

The change in total nonfarm payroll employment for April was revised from plus 77,000 to plus 68,000, and the change for May was revised from plus 69,000 to plus 77,000.

Posted July 6, 2012

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