United States: Payrolls softer in August
September 7, 2012
In August, non-farm payrolls advanced by 96,000, which was down from the revised 141,000 increase observed in July (previously reported: 163,000 jobs). In addition, the figure undershot market expectations, which had anticipated payrolls rising by 125,000. The private sector continued to be entirely responsible for new hiring by adding 103,000 jobs, with leisure and hospitality as well as professional and business services recording the largest gains. Meanwhile, the public sector maintained the negative trend seen throughout the past year, shedding 7,000 jobs. The monthly figure marks the 23th consecutive month with gains in non-farm payrolls and the U.S. economy has now recovered 4.1 million jobs since February 2010, which marked the trough of the crisis in the labour market. That said, despite the improvement seen in the past two years, the economy still remains 4.7 million jobs below the peak reached in January 2008. Meanwhile, the unemployment rate - which derives from a different survey - fell from 8.3% in July to 8.1% in August. That said, the figure mainly reflected a sharp decline in the overall labour force, which was larger than the drop seen in the level of employed workers.