Strong August U.S. Jobs Growth Suggests That Higher Interest Rates Are Coming
- Today’s national employment report from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics offers continued support for strong economic growth, with an increase of 201,000 jobs in August.
- Over the last 12 months, the U.S. economy has added 2.33 million jobs. After downward revisions of June and July data, job gains have averaged 185,000 per month over the last three months. The current economic cycle is the longest continuous expansion on record, with 95 straight months of job additions.
- The national unemployment rate remained at 3.9 percent. The alternative measure of examining the number of people working part-time for economic reasons (in other words, those who would prefer full-time employment) decreased further to 7.4 percent, the lowest level since April 2001.
- Another of the report’s positive points was a pickup in wage growth, which is up by 2.9 percent over the year. The growth rate has been slow and in August reached the highest level since the middle of 2009, with a 77-cent increase in average hourly earnings for all employees.
- Job additions were generally positive across most sectors, with manufacturing employment falling by 3,000 jobs after 12 months of continuous gains. The largest gains remain in the professional and business services sector, with 53,000 jobs added in August and more than 500,000 positions created over the year.
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