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Change in employment July 2013 adpThe summer of 2013 is turning out to the best in years for the U.S. economy as more jobs have so far been added in June and July than in any of the years since the start of the recession.

With the news this morning from ADP and its data analysis partner Moody’s Analytics that the private sector added 200,000 in July and that June’s hiring was 10,000 better than initially reported, the total new jobs created in the last 60 days is 398,000. (more…)

Last year I did some work for a large company that decided it would not hire anyone who was unemployed. It would automatically reject any candidate who had been unemployed even for a day. As I’ve learned, this attitude toward candidates is pervasive — many employers seem to have concluded that the long-term jobless are damaged goods. (more…)

fed reserve labor market chartUnless new economic shocks should upset the rate of improvement, it will take at least two more years before the U.S. labor market returns to its historic norms.

Crunching together 23 different labor market indicators, two economists with the sometimes-contrarian Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City said that though the rate of change is well above the average of the last 20 years, it hasn’t translated into an equivalent rate of improvement in labor market conditions.

What that means is that despite the acceleration in job creation, temp hiring, job availability, and other labor market measures, the national unemployment rate will continue to decline only slowly. (more…)

Palmer forecast q2 2013U.S. employers may be hesitant to hire permanent, full-timers, but they’re bringing on temporary and contract labor faster than they have in months.

The Palmer Forecast says demand for temporary workers will grow at a rate 5.9% faster this quarter than in the same period last year. And that follows a first quarter growth rate that was 6% ahead of 2012.

“Our forecast for the 2013 second quarter follows recent trends showing growth and indicating another increase in demand for temporary workers,” says Greg Palmer, founder and managing director of industry  consultant G. Palmer & Associates. It’s the 14th consecutive quarter of year-over-year growth in hiring for temporary workers, he added. (more…)

About the author: John has been writing about recruiting and employment for nearly a decade,and has worked in the field for almost twice as long. He traces his connection to the employment industry back to the beginning of the commercial Internet when he managed some of the earliest news oriented websites. These offered job boards, which became highly popular with users. John worked with agencies and large employers on job postings, resume search, and campaigns, before consulting with media companies on audience development and online advertising sales.

Econ indicators Feb.2013Economists were surprised and investors pleased by a jobs report this morning that said 236,000 jobs were created in February, which helped bring the U.S. unemployment down to 7.7%.

Every survey conducted before the numbers were released by the Labor Department had the average prediction showing between about 150,000 and 165,000 jobs added in February. Most also predicted that January’s 7.9% unemployment rate wouldn’t change. ADP’s job count, prepared by Moody’s Analytics and released Wednesday, came the closest to today’s numbers, reporting 198,000 private sector jobs were created during the month.

The private sector created 246,000 non-farm jobs, with the biggest gains coming in: (more…)

The U.S. employment picture is looking decidedly brighter at the end of 2012 than it did a year ago. For its final report of the year, the Bureau of Labor Statistics says the unemployment rate dropped in 45 states in November; nowhere did it rise. (more…)

About the author: John has been writing about recruiting and employment for nearly a decade,and has worked in the field for almost twice as long. He traces his connection to the employment industry back to the beginning of the commercial Internet when he managed some of the earliest news oriented websites. These offered job boards, which became highly popular with users. John worked with agencies and large employers on job postings, resume search, and campaigns, before consulting with media companies on audience development and online advertising sales.

The U.S. employment picture is looking decidedly brighter at the end of 2012 than it did a year ago. For its final report of the year, the Bureau of Labor Statistics says the unemployment rate dropped in 45 states in November; nowhere did it rise.

Over the year, only six states showed an increase in unemployment: Connecticut, Maine, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, and South Dakota. One — Pennsylvania — had no change. But all 43 other states and the District of Columbia reduced their unemployment during the year. Nevada, which at 10.8% unemployment in November, has the highest rate in the nation, also made the most progress in putting people back to work. The state dropped 2.4 points over the year.

Over the year, nonfarm employment increased in 45 states and decreased in five states and the District of Columbia. The largest over-the-year percentage increase occurred in North Dakota (+4.7 percent), almost all of it due to the petroleum industry and support industries.

The BLS says over the year, 29 states had significant gains in employment, while only West Virginia lost jobs. (-13,800). The largest over-the-year jobs increase occurred in Texas (+278,800), followed by California (+268,600) and Ohio (+100,400).

Staffing agencies placed 13,600 more workers in October, growing the overall temp industry to 2.54 million. That’s a 7.7% increase over the last 12 months, and the new hires accounted for 8% of the total jobs created during the month, according to numbers from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

However, in the BLS report issued Friday, September’s numbers were adjusted down from the previous month’s report by 7,100. That essentially makes it a wash for job gains in the temp sector over the last three months.

The broader employment services category, which includes the temp industry, registered a gain in October of 15,800 workers. The 2,200 non-temp jobs came from hiring by professional employment organizations, search firms, registries, and employment placement agencies. Specific data for these sectors isn’t available until a month after the initial report is issued.

In September, executive search firms were down 600 workers, the first decline after six months of gains, which added 2,400 workers. (These counts are for recruiters and other personnel hired and employed by search firms, not the number of individuals they place.) Total search firm employment was 32,900 in September, a gain of 3,100 positions over September 2011.

Overall employment in the search industry is at its highest point in the last 10 years.

Employment placement agencies also shed staff in September, declining by 1,500 workers. Even with that cut, placement agencies have added 10,500 new jobs since the beginning of the year for a total employment count in September of 258,900. That’s an increase of almost 15,000 over September 2011.

Since the beginning of the year, the temp — contract labor — sector has added 144,000 workers, on a seasonally adjusted basis. The average monthly increase science January is 14,400. The total number rises to 148,100 using non-seasonally adjusted data. In October alone, the non-seasonally adjusted increase was 56,800 workers.

“Staffing employment growth continues to outpace overall labor market growth as businesses look strategically for higher levels of work force flexibility,” says Richard Wahlquist, president and chief executive officer of the American Staffing Association. “Staffing firms report growth in demand across many sectors, led by increases in demand for higher-skilled talent.”

At the current rate of growth, by next June the number of temp and contract workers will surpass the historical high set in August 2006. That month the BLS reported there were 2.654 million temps at work in the U.S.

About the author: John has been writing about recruiting and employment for nearly a decade,and has worked in the field for almost twice as long. He traces his connection to the employment industry back to the beginning of the commercial Internet when he managed some of the earliest news oriented websites. These offered job boards, which became highly popular with users. John worked with agencies and large employers on job postings, resume search, and campaigns, before consulting with media companies on audience development and online advertising sales.

The economy added 171,000 jobs in October, far more than economists were expecting, while the unemployment rate ticked up slightly to 7.9 percent, a development many expected.

With most sectors showing job increases, including a 13,000 rise in manufacturing jobs and 17,000 in the beleaguered construction industry, this morning’s report from the U.S. Department of Labor was one of the strongest in months. In addition to the 184,000 non-farm, private sector jobs created in October (offset by losses in government job), the report adjusted upward the initial numbers for September and August by 84,000.

Surveys of economists in the days before this morning’s report had them forecasting the rise in the unemployment rate, but expecting job growth to be in the area of about 125,000 jobs. Yesterday, payroll processor ADP said its own analysis put October’s growth closer to 158,000. That helped send stock prices higher, although economists, wary of ADP’s track record at predicting the government report, largely stuck by their initial predictions.

But the jobs report has turned those predictions on their head. It shows more strength in more sectors than nearly anyone was expecting. In the retail sector, for instance, most categories added jobs, with motor vehicles and parts dealers adding 7,300 jobs. Retail overall was up 36,400 jobs.

In the professional and business services sector, a broad category encompassing employment and temp firms (up by 15,800) to computer system design (up 6,600) and building services such as janitorial (up 13,300), the overall job count grew by 51,000. It was the largest of all the sector increases, surpassing even the 32,500 jobs added in healthcare.

Although the unemployment rate increased, the number of out of work Americans –  12.3 million — was unchanged from September. The 5 million who have been out of work for more than half a year was also unchanged. Another 8.3 million people are working part-time because they can’t find full-time work, and 2.4 million more want work, but because they didn’t search for it during the survey period, aren’t included in the counts of the unemployed.

The Wall Street Journal observed that a broader — and some would say better — measure of unemployment fell to 14.6 percent from September’s 14.7 percent. This so-called U-6 report combines all the different counts of partially employed, unemployed and the marginally attached.

The Journal said the main unemployment rate increase “was driven by positive factors.” These were an increase in the number of workers deciding to rejoin the labor force and start looking for work. “That could be a sign of confidence in the state of the labor market,” the Journal said, a sign borne out by increases in various measure of consumer confidence.

The average workweek stood at 34.4 hours, unchanged for the fourth consecutive week. The manufacturing workweek edged down by .1 of an hour to 40.5, with overtime unchanged at 3.2 hours. Changes in the workweek and overtime are considered indicators of economic growth. With increasing demand, employers first increase the workweek before adding new hires.

About the author: John has been writing about recruiting and employment for nearly a decade,and has worked in the field for almost twice as long. He traces his connection to the employment industry back to the beginning of the commercial Internet when he managed some of the earliest news oriented websites. These offered job boards, which became highly popular with users. John worked with agencies and large employers on job postings, resume search, and campaigns, before consulting with media companies on audience development and online advertising sales.

The economy added 171,000 jobs in October, far more than economists were expecting, while the unemployment rate ticked up slightly to 7.9 percent, a development many expected.

With most sectors showing job increases, including a 13,000 rise in manufacturing jobs and 17,000 in the beleaguered construction industry, this morning’s report from the U.S. Department of Labor was one of the strongest in months. In addition to the 184,000 non-farm, private sector jobs created in October (offset by losses in government job), the report adjusted upward the initial numbers for September and August by 84,000.

Surveys of economists in the days before this morning’s report had them forecasting the rise in the unemployment rate, but expecting job growth to be in the area of about 125,000 jobs. Yesterday, payroll processor ADP said its own analysis put October’s growth closer to 158,000. That helped send stock prices higher, although economists, wary of ADP’s track record at predicting the government report, largely stuck by their initial predictions.

But the jobs report has turned those predictions on their head. It shows more strength in more sectors than nearly anyone was expecting. In the retail sector, for instance, most categories added jobs, with motor vehicles and parts dealers adding 7,300 jobs. Retail overall was up 36,400 jobs.

In the professional and business services sector, a broad category encompassing employment and temp firms (up by 15,800) to computer system design (up 6,600) and building services such as janitorial (up 13,300), the overall job count grew by 51,000. It was the largest of all the sector increases, surpassing even the 32,500 jobs added in healthcare.

Although the unemployment rate increased, the number of out-of-work Americans –  12.3 million — was unchanged from September. The 5 million who have been out of work for more than half a year was also unchanged. Another 8.3 million people are working part-time because they can’t find full-time work, and 2.4 million more want work, but because they didn’t search for it during the survey period, aren’t included in the counts of the unemployed.

The Wall Street Journal observed that a broader — and some would say better — measure of unemployment fell to 14.6 percent from September’s 14.7 percent. This so-called U-6 report combines all the different counts of partially employed, unemployed, and the marginally attached.

The Journal said the main unemployment rate increase “was driven by positive factors.” These were an increase in the number of workers deciding to rejoin the labor force and start looking for work. “That could be a sign of confidence in the state of the labor market,” the Journal said, a sign borne out by increases in various measure of consumer confidence.

The average workweek stood at 34.4 hours, unchanged for the fourth consecutive week. The manufacturing workweek edged down by .1 of an hour to 40.5, with overtime unchanged at 3.2 hours. Changes in the workweek and overtime are considered indicators of economic growth. With increasing demand, employers first increase the workweek before adding new hires.