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The U.S. economy grew by an estimated seasonally adjusted 175,000 jobs in May, the Bureau of Labor Statistics announced Friday. The official unemployment rate rose to 7.6 percent. The federal government and postal service shed 13,200 jobs, while state government cut 3,000 and local government added 13,000. It was the 32nd consecutive month for which private job gains—178,000—have exceeded losses, and was somewhat above what a consensus of experts had estimated beforehand.

The monthly tally makes no distinction between full-time and part-time jobs, nor does it consider how much those jobs pay compared with the ones that have been lost.

A report by Automated Data Processing on Wednesday had spurred some observers to lower their expectations for the BLS report, even though ADP's survey's record of meshing with the government report is not auspicious. ADP had reported 135,000 new jobs added in May by the private sector.

Besides the headline unemployment rate—known at the BLS as U3—of 7.6 percent, there is another BLS metric known as U6, a measure of underemployment that includes part-time workers who need full-time work but can't find it, as well as a portion of discouraged workers. U6 clocked in at 13.8 percent, down from a revised 13.9 percent in April.

The reported 165,000 jobs gained in April was revised to 149,000. Gains in March were revised from 138,000 to 142,000.

Those unemployed for six months or more held steady at 4.4 million. The civilian labor force participation ratio rose slightly to 63.4 percent, still its lowest level since 1979; the employment-population ratio was unchanged at 58.6 percent. If the participation rate had remained at the pre-recession level, the unemployment rate would now be 9.7 percent.

Add up the 11.8 million who are officially unemployed (U3), the 7.9 million underemployed (U6), and the 6.4 million not in the labor force but who want a job, and the total is 26.1 million unemployed and underemployed Americans.

Among other news in today's job report:

Professional services: +57,000
Leisure & hospitality: +38,000
Health care: +11,000
Retail trade: +28,000
Construction: +7,000
Average workweek (for production and non-supervisory workers) was unchanged at 34.4 hours.
Average manufacturing hours rose 0.1 to 40.8 hours.
Average hourly earnings for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls was up 1 cent from April's revised figure to $23.89.

Adjusted for inflation, average hourly wages have been nearly flat for four years.

For more details about today's jobs report and some related charts, please continue reading below the fold.

The BLS jobs report is the product of a pair of surveys, one of more than 410,000 business establishments called Current Employment Statistics, and one called the Current Population Survey, which questions 60,000 householders each month. The establishment survey determines how many new jobs were added. It is always calculated on a seasonally adjusted basis determined by a frequently tweaked formula. The CPS provides data that determine the official "headline" unemployment rate, the one denoted as "U3." That's the number which is now 7.6 percent.

The BLS report only provides a snapshot of what's happening at a single point in time.
It's important to understand that the jobs-created-last-month-numbers that it reports are not "real." Not because of a conspiracy, but because statisticians apply formulas to the raw data, estimate the number of jobs created by the "birth" and "death" of businesses, and use other filters to fine-tune the numbers. And, always good to remember, in the fine print, they tell us that the actual number of newly created jobs reported is actually plus or minus 100,000.

Plus there are the revisions. In the past eight months, from the first take on the monthly jobs gains until the final revision, the BLS has been off as little as 4 percent and as much as 38 percent.

•••

Here's what the job growth numbers looked like in May for the previous 10 years. These data have been recalculated via the BLS's benchmark revisions:

May 2003:  - 10,000  
May 2004: +306,000  
May 2005: +168,000
May 2006: + 21,000
May 2007: +141,000  
May 2008:  -186,000  
May 2009:  -352,000  
May 2010: +521,000 (strong Census hiring)  
May 2011: +115,000
May 2012: +125,000
May 2013: +175,000

•••

This chart shows the civilian population-to-employment ratio.

This chart shows net job gains and losses in thousands on a monthly basis since 1939:
This chart shows net job gains and losses in thousands on a monthly basis since 1983:
This chart compares nominal and inflation-adjusted median household income for the past 13 years:

Originally posted to Daily Kos Labor on Fri Jun 07, 2013 at 05:59 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  It's steady but we need to be increasing jobs by (8+ / 0-)

    200K per month to really bring down that unemployment rate.

    President Obama, January 9, 2012: "Change is hard, but it is possible. I've Seen it. I've Lived it."

    by Drdemocrat on Fri Jun 07, 2013 at 06:10:04 AM PDT

    •  Yep. And we could easily do that if (12+ / 0-)

      1.  We stopped firing government workers
      2.  Hired some more teachers and first responders
      3.  And began repairing our infrastructure by hiring private contractors to fix roads and bridges and such.
      4.  Not to mention the usual "green" suggestions around retro-fitting buildings, etc.

      •  In PA, Corbett cut Education so deeply that school (4+ / 0-)

        districts who not laid off a teacher for decades , and some never have, found themselves having to lay off teachers because of these severe cuts to public education.

        Our school district , I heard, has not laid off a teacher for well over 30 years and found they had to lay off 2 dozen teachers and now the classroom size is enormous for those teachers remaining.

        Follow PA Keystone Liberals on Twitter: @KeystoneLibs

        by wishingwell on Fri Jun 07, 2013 at 06:31:11 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  #endthesequester (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Fury, Denver11

        Imagine if Obama didn't have a bipartisanship fetish, Simpsons-Bowles weren't trolling on every network, austerity was a dirty word, and of course a bunch of fringe lunatics weren't in control of congress, and arguably the senate...

        250,000 jobs each month would be low-balling.

        •  200k/mo = job recovery by 2020. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Eric Nelson

          250k/mo = job recovery by 2018.

          173k/mo = job recovery by 2023. TEN YEARS FROM NOW.

          Those figures are with a very conservative 88,000 jobs per month needed to stay even with growth of the working-age population. Some economists use a higher figure than 88,000, which would push back the dates I've given to even later.

          And that's just to get employment back to 2007 levels. But:
          * That does not account for full-time being replaced with part-time.
          * That does not account for higher-paid being replaced with lower-paid
          .
          * Hard to recall now, but in 2007 we didn't think the economy was doing all that great.

          Plug in your own number here: http://www.hamiltonproject.org/...

          "The true strength of our nation comes not from the might of our arms or the scale of our wealth, but from the enduring power of our ideals." - Barack Obama

          by HeyMikey on Fri Jun 07, 2013 at 07:54:21 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Any idea what the numbers would look like if.... (7+ / 0-)

    1) we had zero government (Fed, State & Local) job losses?
    2) we had government job growth equivalent to population growth?
    3) we had government job growth in line with historical trends prior to 2008?

    It is amazing how the conservatives who bemoan the slow job recovery and continued high unemployment rates dismiss the impact on both (not to mention slow GDP) of government hiring and employment.  Unless of course it is military related.

    •  Well it looks like from Diary discussed stats... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Denver11

      that Fed losses were mostly made up by state/local hiring.

      And I'm not sure but think the Fed loss may reflect the short term furloughs which have started and are really happening but are not job losses per se.

      BBC newshour just spent 10 minutes on US jobs; how they are changing (not for the good). 5 minutes with NYC women delivering cookies, cleaning, part time office stuff. She's working but can't find a regular friggin job.

      BBC is a bit of alright.

    •  Yes, Denver, the wingers want money for (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Denver11

      defense so they'll be able to continue to feel safe will sitting on their duffs and doing nothing but playing summer theater for the folks.

      Building a better America with activism, cooperation, ingenuity and snacks.

      by judyms9 on Fri Jun 07, 2013 at 06:45:43 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  things *are* looking up. (10+ / 0-)

    I was laid off at the end of a contract on April 30, and had a new job that paid $2.00/hr more on May 16th.

    We have no desire to offend you -- unless you are a twit!

    by ScrewySquirrel on Fri Jun 07, 2013 at 06:11:33 AM PDT

  •  My 5th day of unemployment on my 6th layoff (8+ / 0-)

    Today I got my last paycheck. Paying as many bills as possible, mortgage and such.

    Have my fingers crossed on my Tricare application: if that is approved and I get a provider number, the light is GREEN.

    Should hear back from them the week after next. Biting fingernails and hoping to avoid having to go get a shitty job, of which there are plenty. Get crappy pay, drive your car into the ground for ZERO compensation, have nitwits fuss with you about the wording of notes they may not really understand. Make 1/4th of what you actually bring in for the company. AND still worry about getting laid off or the place shutting the doors.

    •  I have not yet filed for The Good Life™ (0+ / 0-)

      Though I will in a couple weeks, if I don't hear good news.

      UE should be sweet. I can drink beer and watch cable tv news shows all morning, probably even get a dog and train it.

      (snark: I don't drink beer, I hate tv news shows,  and I don't even have cable)

    •  We know that feeling as that happened to my (0+ / 0-)

      husband and several of my friends frequently. In fact, each year we get together with a group of friends from college days that have stayed in touch for the past 25 years. Well we all talked about how there was one year back in the 9os where we were all laid off at the same time. And we started counting the number of layoffs and it was jaw dropping how many.

      Follow PA Keystone Liberals on Twitter: @KeystoneLibs

      by wishingwell on Fri Jun 07, 2013 at 06:38:57 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  There are some areas in some states where there (0+ / 0-)

      are few crappy job and not much in the way of a decent job. It all depends where one lives as to whether there are even crappy jobs out there. Some places , those jobs are plentiful like you said but then I talk to friends who live places where they cannot even get hired at McDonalds as there are no openings and no jobs. Then I talk to another friend and jobs are plentiful and things are picking up where he lives.

      Follow PA Keystone Liberals on Twitter: @KeystoneLibs

      by wishingwell on Fri Jun 07, 2013 at 06:42:03 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Another jobs "slow drip feed" report... (7+ / 0-)

    Thanks MB for doing this...I know this monthly series must be getting pretty monotonous for you to report these days.

    ("...the slowest economic recovery in history...")

    I'm sure folks will get into the semantice of the phrase, immediately above. And, the only response I can provide is: "I'm not really interested in the specifics. All I know is it's pretty fucking slow."

    "I always thought if you worked hard enough and tried hard enough, things would work out. I was wrong." --Katharine Graham

    by bobswern on Fri Jun 07, 2013 at 06:27:14 AM PDT

  •  MB: Relentless warrior for workers left behind. (6+ / 0-)

    Sure would be nice to see about 535 of you in Congress.

    For all the "little" scandals popping up here and there, most of which will have no legs, the lingering plight of long-term unemployed workers (including those who have fallen off the statistical radar) is a scandal truly worth the name.

    Nobody should pretend that the economy is improving in any fundamental way until that not-very-small army of unemployed and under-employed workers has begun to shrink.

    When that happens, fist-bumps, high-fives, whoops and parties will be in order.

    Not before.

    LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

    by dinotrac on Fri Jun 07, 2013 at 06:27:50 AM PDT

    •  I imagine we are told the happy crap about the (5+ / 0-)

      economy as a way of placating the natives.

      The American government is far, far more adept at manipulating the population and preventing them from going Turkey on the vast inequities we have ensconced in the system here.

      Lying is cheap and can be done 24/7, which it is.

      Americans tolerate an amazing amount of needless horseshit.

      Other countries are amazed.

      •  At some point the lying ceases to work. (3+ / 0-)

        People start to see that their friends aren't working, or that their businesses have strung out their credit lines as clients pay slowly or not at all.

        It's easy to walk the streets around here (about 30 miles west of Chicag) , or to drive around the strip malls and see signs that things aren't what they should be.

        The scary part is all the stories of people and businesses teetering on the edge.

        There is a secret Armageddon building if the cheerier news stories don't start translating into real improvements at the street level.

        LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

        by dinotrac on Fri Jun 07, 2013 at 06:45:47 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Meh. (0+ / 0-)
          At some point the lying ceases to work. People start to see that their friends aren't working, or that their businesses have strung out their credit lines as clients pay slowly or not at all.
          Yes, I agree. But the problem is that our attention spans are too short. We quickly get distracted by more important things, like Princess Kate's pregnancy and the Kardashians. And there will always be a significant % of people who will be eager to believe in something for nothing: we can have all the government we need or want AND pay less in taxes for it, and if it doesn't work out then it must be the fault of some marginalized scapegoat: brown people, immigrants, atheists, gays, welfare queens, liberals, bureaucrats, unions, teachers, teacher unions, Muslims, etc. "A man is his own easiest dupe, for what he wants to be true he generally believes to be true" (Demosthenes).

          Bottom line: periods of potential reform, like 1993-94 and 2009-10, will be brief. We mistakenly treated both those periods like the beginnings of marathons, failing to realize they were sprints. That's why we didn't make the most of them.

          There is a secret Armageddon building if the cheerier news stories don't start translating into real improvements at the street level.
          I respectfully disagree. There won't be Turkey-style, much less Egypt-style, protests in America for the simple reason that it's less trouble just to register and vote, and people even can't be troubled to do that. The lure of Princess Kate and the Kardashians is too strong.

          Example: the Occupy movement was, in many respects, wonderful. But they didn't channel people into registering and voting. Without actual votes, in the end it's just noise.

          Example: Blue Dog Blanche Lincoln succeeded in watering down the 2009 stimulus package and Obamacare. Failure #1: Reid should've pushed through filibuster reform as job 1 in January 2009; then Lincoln wouldn't have been so critical. Failure #2: the Dem leadership should've whipped her into line instead of kowtowing to her. Failure #3: the Dem leadership should've campaigned for her progressive primary opponent, Bill Halter, in 2010. Failure #4: in the Lincoln-Halter 2010 runoff, less than 5% of the population of Arkansas turned out to vote for Halter. Too busy with Princess Kate and the Kardashians.

          There won't be an Armageddon. No bang; just a long succession of whimpers.

          "The true strength of our nation comes not from the might of our arms or the scale of our wealth, but from the enduring power of our ideals." - Barack Obama

          by HeyMikey on Fri Jun 07, 2013 at 08:15:27 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  The people whose businesses are teetering and (0+ / 0-)

            whose lives are dying on the vine do not have short attention spans.  It's very hard to ignore your own life falling apart, or your brother's, or your good friends'.

            As to secret Armageddon, I am not talking about protests, but of the disaster that is hovering around many Americans right now, people who have managed to hang on by their fingernails, but really need a turnaround soon.

            LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

            by dinotrac on Fri Jun 07, 2013 at 08:45:30 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I'm unconvinced. (0+ / 0-)

              Things are slowly getting less bad, in some ways. That's probably enough to defuse a crisis.

              I wish enough people would get excited. I wish enough people would focus. But too many will probably trudge on.

              "The true strength of our nation comes not from the might of our arms or the scale of our wealth, but from the enduring power of our ideals." - Barack Obama

              by HeyMikey on Fri Jun 07, 2013 at 08:53:18 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Your world sounds like a better place than mine. (0+ / 0-)

                Wish I could afford to live there.

                LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

                by dinotrac on Fri Jun 07, 2013 at 08:54:30 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  No, mine is worse. (0+ / 0-)

                  In your world, a critical mass of people will eventually muster the self-discipline, insight, and energy to get up and do something. In my world, too many people are too distracted and demoralized. There's not a critical mass.

                  In the face of terrifying dangers and golden political opportunities, people just keep on keeping on, in a sort of twilight sleep in which they are conscious of nothing except the daily round of work, family life, darts at the pub, exercising the dog, mowing the lawn, bringing home the beer, etc.

                  --Orwell

                  Actually, I agree with you in the long run. I do believe the human race will eventually arrive at an equitable societal arrangement. But my long run is that of Keynes, in which all of us now alive are dead. I think achieving equity will take decades at least, probably centuries. And I think equity will arrive smidgen by smidgen, in fits and starts, two steps ahead and one back--not cataclysmically.

                  "The true strength of our nation comes not from the might of our arms or the scale of our wealth, but from the enduring power of our ideals." - Barack Obama

                  by HeyMikey on Fri Jun 07, 2013 at 09:09:42 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Gosh, I hope something picks up before then. (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    HeyMikey

                    I fear the time to make a difference is running out for a lot of people.

                    I use that word "hope" very deliberately.  I have no reason to believe that something actually will pick up.

                    LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

                    by dinotrac on Fri Jun 07, 2013 at 09:13:11 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Biggest worry: global warming. (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      dinotrac

                      The kind of incremental human progress I guess at will be too late to prevent massive damage from a hotter planet.

                      I hope my guess is wrong.

                      "The true strength of our nation comes not from the might of our arms or the scale of our wealth, but from the enduring power of our ideals." - Barack Obama

                      by HeyMikey on Fri Jun 07, 2013 at 10:35:27 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Depends on who you are. (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        HeyMikey

                        People being people, it's hard to look at the bigger picture when you own world is falling apart.

                        This, btw, is a fundamental mistake many people make:  all of those "collateral damage" people  can help or can derail the effort to get carbon-neutral.

                        If somebody really wants to go all Keynesian, you'd think there'd be some kick-starting to be done (beyond caulkindg Windows) that could generate jobs.

                        The track record so far isn't very good, but neither is it definitive.  People have been put to decent work building and maintaining windmills -- not to mention Teslas!

                        This is where Republicans really piss me off.  The supposed free market warriors are anything but when it comes to energy and the environment.

                        LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

                        by dinotrac on Fri Jun 07, 2013 at 10:52:22 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  100% agree. (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          dinotrac

                          As Krugman never tires of pointing out, it would help a lot to spend on something destructive (like WWII) or neutral (like a space alien invasion that will never come, or burying money in old coal mines and paying people to dig it up); thus it would help even more to spend money on things that are actually productive (like solar panels, wind turbines, education, repairing bridges, high speed rail, housing the homeless, etc.) (by the way, America has several times more vacant houses than homeless people!!!!).

                          "The true strength of our nation comes not from the might of our arms or the scale of our wealth, but from the enduring power of our ideals." - Barack Obama

                          by HeyMikey on Fri Jun 07, 2013 at 11:26:26 AM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

    •  The word 'economy' should be replaced with.. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      dinotrac

      ..'joblessness' imo..

      Nobody should pretend that the economy joblessness is improving in any fundamental way until that not-very-small army of unemployed and under-employed workers has begun to shrink.
      ..or 'share of gains' or some word indicating that a pyramid of reward is developing not unlike that of the roaring 20's - sort of - gains disproporationately going to the top while the base of unemployed expands

      It seems that with all the various reports of wallstreet doing so well and even housing market improving (housing-usually a better indicator of more job gains than wall street) the gains in jobs just isn't keeping pace.

      It's unbalanced improvement

      When the republicans keep harping about "expanding the base" when referring to taxation,  the real desired and resulting expansion caused by their austerity of forced sequestration and slashing of public sector jobs is indeed expanding the base -> of the unemployed or underemployed - a strategy designed for lowering wage price and hurting unions by the creation of a less mobile "excess labor pool"

      If the republicans really wanted to "expand the base" of tax payers (which in truth language means regressive flat tax which is proven to be unfair, a failure- and wrong) they would quit firing workers and stop obstructing any reinvestment.
      Iow's add jobs any way possible not the opposite as they have been doingfor 4+ years now

      Thx MB

      rant over

  •  My husband says Lowes hires a lot of people for (4+ / 0-)

    the spring and summer season which is their busiest time. It used to be many of these would just be seasonal. But he says due to attrition of permanent part time and permanent full time people who move on to other jobs, these seasonal workers in his store are almost asked if they want to stay on and are offered a chance at at least part time permanent but often fulltime permanent.  

    So he said that is good news in his little world as it used to be seasonal was just that but now , it is often an entry to permanent work in another dept once the greenhouse season is done.

    He says more people that usual were just hired and the departments are much better staffed than he has seen in years. So retail must be picking up a little bit depending on where one lives.

    Follow PA Keystone Liberals on Twitter: @KeystoneLibs

    by wishingwell on Fri Jun 07, 2013 at 06:28:56 AM PDT

  •  Fed government shed 9400 jobs (4+ / 0-)

    The bulk of which is almost certainly sequestration-related.

    http://www.buonoforgovernor.com/

    by Paleo on Fri Jun 07, 2013 at 06:38:30 AM PDT

  •  Until the philosophy of employers changes (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Meteor Blades, HeyMikey, Fury, Eric Nelson

    and they stop laying off people when they turn 50, there is going to continue to be a pile up at this end of the age ranges in the working class.

    Who is hiring 50+-year-olds these days?

    Since many of these older people can't qualify for aid and can't get any health care, the country is creating a huge pool of poor, unhealthy middle-aged people. (And please don't start touting the ACA. I and many others live in the states that refuse to expand Medicaid and help us. So, we aren't getting anything from that unless you can change the Supreme Court's ruling on it.)

    What's supposed to happen to these folks? Does anybody give a good goddamn?

    I'm not seeing it.

    All we get are pathetic head-pats, and wishes of "Hope things change for you soon!"

    Yeah. That's not happening.

    "The difference between the right word and the almost-right word is like the difference between lightning and the lightning bug." -- Mark Twain

    by Brooke In Seattle on Fri Jun 07, 2013 at 06:48:14 AM PDT

  •  Could we not have the job loss diagram.. (0+ / 0-)

    with the 1929 and 1937 downturns as well?

    I often wonder what they would look like on top of this depressing news?

    Worse or better?

    If better (faster recovery due to whatever reasons, FDR or WW2), then this is no RECESSION, but indeed a DEPRESSION.

    Ugh. --UB.

    "Daddy, every time a bell rings, a Randian Libertaria­n picks up his Pan Am tickets for the Libertaria­n Paradise of West Dakota!"

    by unclebucky on Fri Jun 07, 2013 at 06:52:23 AM PDT

  •  The first Friday of every month (0+ / 0-)

    We get updated by our government on The Hunger Expectation Games.

    I'm not surprised that people accept job numbers being portrayed as either good or bad news due to "economist's expectations" but that doesn't mean I actually buy the smoke being blown up our collective asses.

  •  Same as it ever was (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Meteor Blades, HeyMikey, Eric Nelson

    No recession - tepid growth.

    One positive - we seem to avoided the 2010 - 2012 trend of greatly declining job creation in Q2.  The other positive is that State and Local governments have essentially stopped laying off workers.  

    Still not close to as fast job growth as it could and should be.

  •  Remember: some people want high unemployment! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Eric Nelson

    A workforce that is desparate for jobs will accept lower wages and benefits, and dangerous workplaces.

    This benefits business owners.

  •  Are these unemployment numbers for real (0+ / 0-)

    I'm sure the article is accurate.  But I heard that people fall off the unemployment rolls and don't get counted anymore.  If this is true, how many people really aren't working.  

    I saw that the veteran unemployment rate went down.  This may be due to a change in hiring practices.  They got to make more jobs.  Bring the jobs home from the factories overseas, so we have more jobs again.

    More jobs projects could help.  Roads projects, bridge projects and more. Then we'd have more jobs.

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