U.S. Economy Adds 280k New Jobs In May

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported this morning that 280k nonfarm payrolls were added during the month of May. This follows revised payrolls gains of 221k in April and 119k in March.

NFP

The Education and Health Services industry added the most jobs in May.

By Industry This Month

The Education and Health Services industry, the Leisure and Hospitality industry, and the Professional Services industry have contributed the most to job gains over the last 8 years. The Construction and Manufacturing sectors have had the most difficulty recovering from the economic downturn.

By Industry Since 2007

The household survey shows that 630k full-time jobs were lost in May, while part-time employment decreased by 232k. Since November 2007, when the household survey showed peak employment, full-time jobs have decreased by 473k and part-time jobs have increased by 2,748k.

PT FT Split

PT FT Historical

Part-time employees made up 18.47% of the workforce in May, down from 18.68% in April.

PT Share

Those part-time for economic reasons, workers who would prefer to be full-time but are involuntarily part-time, as a share of those part-time for noneconomic reasons was 33.4%, up from 33.0%.

PT Reasons

The unemployment rate (U-3) was 5.5% in April, an increase from 5.4% in April. The broader unemployment rate (U-6) was unchanged at 10.8%.

U-3 and U-6

The spread between the U-6 and U-3, or underemployment spread, decreased to 5.3%.

Underemployment Spread

Youth unemployment continues to be volatile.

U-3 Age

Unemployment for those with less than a high school diploma was unchanged at 8.6%.

U-3 Education

Blacks continue to experience the highest unemployment rate at 10.2%.

U-3 Race

The labor force participation rate increased to 62.9% from 62.8%, while the employment-to-population ratio rose to 59.4% from 59.3%.

LFP and EP

Participation among men was unchanged at 69.4% and participation among women increased to 56.8% from 56.6%.

Participation Sex

The participation rate for prime age workers (25-54) was unchanged at 81.0%.

Participation Age

Since the total participation rate peaked in August 2008, participation has only risen in the 55+ age bracket.

Participation Age since 2008

Average weekly hours worked by production and supervisory employees increased to 33.7 from 33.6, while average hourly earnings increased to $20.97 from $20.91. Average hourly earnings have increased 2.04% from a year ago.

Hours Worked

Hourly Earnings

Average duration of unemployment in May was 30.7 weeks, down from 30.8. This metric reached a high of 40.7 in 2011, and is still elevated by historical standards.

Average Duration

Of those unemployed, 43.4% have been so for 15 weeks or longer.

Duration Distribution

Annual employment growth against real GDP growth:

Employment vs GDP

U.S. Consumer Confidence March 2015

U.S. consumer confidence decreased to a reading of 101.3 (1985=100) in March, as published this morning by The Conference Board. This compares to a revised reading of 98.8 in February.

The Present Situation Index component decreased to 112.1 from 109.1, while the Expectations Index component increased to 90.0 from 96.0.

Lynn Franco, Director of Economic Indicators at The Conference Board, said: “Consumer confidence improved in March after retreating in February. This month’s increase was driven by an improved short-term outlook for both employment and income prospects; consumers were less upbeat about business conditions. Consumers’ assessment of current conditions declined for the second consecutive month, suggesting that growth may have softened in Q1, and doesn’t appear to be gaining any significant momentum heading into the spring months.”

Consumer Confidence

The U.S. consumer sentiment index, reported by the University of Michigan, decreased to 93.0 in March from 95.4 in February.

The harsh winter weather and the small rebound in gas prices caused some slippage in consumer confidence since the start of the year. Importantly, most of the recent variation was among lower income households, whose budgets are more sensitive to higher utility costs and disruptions in work hours. Households with incomes in the middle and top thirds of the distribution, in contrast, recorded gains in confidence in the March survey. Expanding job opportunities as well as more favorable wage gains have meant that consumer spending will rebound during the balance of the year. While there is a widespread expectation that interest rates will begin to rise later in the year, few consumers anticipated that the size of the increases will dampen their credit sensitive purchase plans.

Consumer Sentiment

The recent trend:

Confidence Both

U.S. Consumer Confidence February 2015

U.S. consumer confidence decreased to a reading of 96.4 (1985=100) in February, as published this morning by The Conference Board. This compares to a revised reading of 103.8 in January.

The Present Situation Index component decreased to 110.2 from 113.9, while the Expectations Index component decreased to 87.2 from 97.0.

According to Lynn Franco, Director of Economic Indicators at The Conference Board: “After a large gain in January, consumer confidence retreated in February, but still remains at pre-recession levels (September 2007, Index, 99.5). Consumers’ assessment of current conditions remained positive, but short-term expectations declined. While the number of consumers expecting conditions to deteriorate was virtually unchanged, fewer consumers expect conditions to improve, prompting a less upbeat outlook. Despite this month’s decline, consumers remain confident that the economy will continue to expand at the current pace in the months ahead.”

Consumer Confidence

The U.S. consumer sentiment index, reported by the University of Michigan, decreased to 93.6 in February from 98.1 in January.

Consumer Sentiment

The recent trend:

Consumer Confidence Both

January 2015 Consumer Confidence

U.S. consumer confidence decreased to a reading of 102.9 (1985=100) in January, as published this morning by The Conference Board. This compares to a revised reading of 93.1 in December.

The Present Situation Index component increased to 112.6 from 99.9, while the Expectations Index component increased to 96.4 from 88.5.

Lynn Franco, Director of Economic Indicators at The Conference Board, said: “Consumer confidence rose sharply in January, and is now at its highest level since August 2007 (Index, 105.6). A more positive assessment of current business and labor market conditions contributed to the improvement in consumers’ view of the present situation. Consumers also expressed a considerably higher degree of optimism regarding the short-term outlook for the economy and labor market, as well as their earnings.”

Consumer Confidence

The U.S. consumer sentiment index, reported by the University of Michigan, increased to 98.2 in January from 93.6 in December.

Consumer Sentiment

The recent trend:

Both Confidence

December Consumer Confidence

U.S. consumer confidence decreased to a reading of 92.6 (1985=100) in December, as published this morning by The Conference Board. This compares to a revised reading of 91.0 in November.

The Present Situation Index component increased to 98.6 from 93.7, while the Expectations Index component decreased to 88.50 from 89.3.

Says Lynn Franco, Director of Economic Indicators at The Conference Board, “Consumer confidence rebounded modestly in December, propelled by a considerably more favorable assessment of current economic and labor market conditions. As a result, the Present Situation Index is now at its highest level since February 2008 (Index, 104.0). Consumers were moderately less optimistic about the short-term outlook in December, but even so, they are more confident at year-end than they were at the beginning of the year.”

Consumer Confidence

The U.S. consumer sentiment index, reported by the University of Michigan, increased to 93.6 in December from 88.8 in November.

Consumer Sentiment

The recent trend:

Confidence and Sentimentr

November Consumer Confidence

U.S. consumer confidence decreased to a reading of 88.7 (1985=100) in November, as published this morning by The Conference Board. This compares to a revised reading of 94.1 in October.

The Present Situation Index component decreased to 91.3 from 94.4, while the Expectations Index component decreased to 87.0 from 93.8.

Says Lynn Franco, Director of Economic Indicators at The Conference Board: “Consumer confidence retreated in November, primarily due to reduced optimism in the short-term outlook. Consumers were somewhat less positive about current business conditions and the present state of the job market; moreover, their optimism in the short-term outlook in both areas has waned. However, income expectations were virtually unchanged and gas prices remain low, which should help boost holiday sales.”

Consumer Confidence

The U.S. consumer sentiment index, reported by the University of Michigan, increased slightly to 86.9 in November from 86.4 in October.

Consumer Sentiment

The recent trend:

Both Consumer COnfidence

October Consumer Confidence

U.S. consumer confidence increased to a reading of 94.5 (1985=100) in October, as published this morning by The Conference Board. This compares to a revised reading of 89.0 in September.

The Present Situation Index component increased to 9.7 from 93.0, while the Expectations Index component increased to 95.0 from 96.4.

Says Lynn Franco, Director of Economic Indicators at The Conference Board: “Consumer confidence, which had declined in September, rebounded in October. A more favorable assessment of the current job market and business conditions contributed to the improvement in consumers’ view of the present situation. Looking ahead, consumers have regained confidence in the short-term outlook for the economy and labor market, and are more optimistic about their future earnings potential. With the holiday season around the corner, this boost in confidence should be a welcome sign for retailers.”

CB COnfidence

The U.S. consumer sentiment index, reported by the University of Michigan, increased to 86.4 in October from 84.6 in September.

Consumer Sentiment

The recent trend:

Consumer Confidence