Job growth remains steady as summer turns to fall

Updated
Expectations headed into this morning’s jobs report was that the economy continued to steadily add new jobs last month, and the new data shows exactly that.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported this morning that the U.S. economy added 156,000 jobs in September, roughly in line with projections. The unemployment rate inched higher, rising to 5% from 4.9%, but it’s largely for good reasons: more people entered the job market looking for employment last month. It’s also the 12th consecutive month the rate has been at 5% or lower.

As for the revisions: July’s job totals were revised down, from 275,000 to 252,000, while August’s were revised up, from 151,000 to 167,000. Combined, that’s a net loss of 7,000.

All told, like last month, this isn’t an especially exciting jobs report, though it does come against a notable backdrop: the Federal Reserve is weighing a possible rate hike, and after robust job growth in the early summer, an increase appeared more likely. Today’s mild BLS report may very well lead the Fed to hold off a bit longer.

Over the last 12 months, the overall economy has created 2.44 million new jobs, which is a pretty healthy number. What’s more, September was the 72nd consecutive month of positive job growth, which is the longest on record.

As for the political season, also note that this is the penultimate jobs report ahead of Election Day next month. There will be one other, which will be released on Friday, Nov. 4.

Above you’ll find the chart I run every month, showing monthly job losses since the start of the Great Recession. The image makes a distinction – red columns point to monthly job totals under the Bush administration, while blue columns point to job totals under the Obama administration.

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




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Job growth remains steady as summer turns to fall

Updated