August 3, 2018
The United States economy is continuing its longest streak of consecutive positive monthly job growth at 94 months, with 3.9 million jobs created since President Donald J. Trump was elected in November 2016.
Although the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) monthly Employment Situation Report shows that nonfarm payroll employment rose by 157,000 jobs in July, falling short of expectations, the average job growth per month is 215,000 for 2018—exceeding average monthly gains in 2016 (195K) and 2017 (182K)—once cumulative positive revisions to May and June are included.
Job growth has been strong across the board during the first 18 months of this Administration, and in July the manufacturing and professional & business services industries experienced significant gains. Since President Trump was elected, goods-producing industries (construction, manufacturing, mining, and logging) have added more than 900,000 jobs.
A separate BLS Household Survey offers more indications of a strong, growing U.S. economy. The unemployment rate edged down 0.1 percentage point (p.p.) over the month to 3.9 percent, a 0.9 p.p. decrease since January 2017. This is just the eighth time since 1970 that the unemployment rate has fallen below 4 percent, with three of these occasions occurring in 2018. The unemployment rate for Hispanics has reached another historic low, reaching 4.5 percent in July. This is the second month in row the unemployment rate for Hispanics has reached the lowest level recorded since the series began in 1973. The July unemployment rate for individuals with less than a high school diploma fell 0.4 p.p. over the month to 5.1 percent in July, the lowest level since the series began in 1992. The July unemployment rate for adult men was 3.4 percent, the lowest since December 2000.
The employment-population ratio, which is an important indicator of the share of people who are working, rose by 0.1 p.p. in July to 60.5 percent. This marks its highest point since January 2009 (see figure). Since January 2017, the employment-population ratio has increased by 0.6 p.p., which is a sign that more workers are finding jobs and coming off the sidelines, which is good news for America’s economy.
The unemployment rate declined in July across alternative measures of how we measure the workforce, or labor utilizations, as well. The U6 measure, which includes workers who are marginally attached to the labor force and those employed part-time for economic reasons, declined by 0.3 p.p. over the month to 7.5 percent—its lowest rate since May 2001—again showing that those who had given up looking for work are throwing their hats in the ring.
Today’s BLS Employment Situation Report shows another month of strong job growth and demonstrates that the American labor market is thriving under the Trump Administration’s pro-growth policies.