October’s Job Report and September’s Job Opening Survey did not come in with the numbers expected by leading economic experts. Job creation slowed way down in October, seeming to confirm a partial success in the fight against inflation. The stock market has met that news with a subdued hope that the Federal Reserve will not be raising interest rates again this year. September’s job opening report saw the number of open jobs remain roughly the same at 9.6 million. The number of new Non-farm payrolls increased minimally by 150,000 for the month of October. Unemployment rose to its highest number since January of 2022, and is, for now, up from the previous month’s 6.4 million. With the new number at 6.5 million, the unemployment rate increased to 3.9% rate from September into October. Transportation and Warehouse job openings fell to wipe out last month’s 9,000 job gains, decreasing by 12,000 in October.
September's Job Opening and Turnover Survey
At the end of September, job openings did not see any increases or decreases, remaining at 9.6 million, and hires staying the same as August at 5.9 million. The quit rate increased minimally for the second month in a row to 3.7 million, and layoffs and discharges decreased a small amount to 1.5 million.
The following sectors saw some increases in job openings once the final numbers from September were added. The Accommodation and Food Service industries added 141,000, the biggest additions for the month of September. Job openings also increased in Arts, Entertainment, and Recreation by 39,000 jobs, with some fluctuations in the Entertainment industry due to ongoing strikes. There were decreases in the Federal Government (-43,000) and the Information sector (-41,000).
October's Jobs Report
For the month of October, Non-farm payrolls grew by 150,000, almost a complete turnaround from September’s tremendously higher numbers. Unemployment increased to a high for 2023 of 3.9%, while the labor force participation rate has continued to remain at about the same rate, 62.9%.
Manufacturing has seen a decline in the number of workers (-35,000), with most of that being due to the strike called by the United Auto Workers labor union. Transportation and Warehousing jobs lost all of the 9,000 jobs gained in September, making it a 12,000 job loss for October. With the holidays beginning their ramp up, though, these numbers will assuredly be different next month. Leisure and Hospitality did not see the huge gains they had in September, only adding 19,000 jobs in October. Due to ongoing strikes in the motion picture industry, Entertainment jobs started trending down in October, but with the writers resolving their issues, those changes were minimal. Government (+51,000) and Healthcare (+58,000) also saw gains last month. As the late fall and winter holidays start to loom on the horizon, experts are, per their usual, now waiting to see what happens next.
The October Jobs Report and the September Job Opening and Turnover Survey came in with a whimper this month, giving many experts hope that the Federal Reserve will forgo any further interest rate increases. As stated above, the holidays are just around the corner as well, and, if the season goes well, many hope to end 2023 on a high note. However, those monitoring economic conditions are stating that it is important to remain vigilant and continue to watch what happens next.
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Meaghan Goldberg covers recruitment and digital marketing for Lionzone. A Patterson, GA native, after graduating from both Valdosta State University and Middle Tennessee State University, Meaghan joined Lionzone in 2018 as a digital recruitment strategist before becoming the social media manager.