Friday, October 5, 2012

September jobs report unequivocally good

The headline news from the September jobs report is that the national unemployment rate fell to 7.8 percent on a seasonally-adjusted basis, the lowest that it's been since January 2009.

Unlike some previous months in which unemployment fell because of people leaving the labor force, this month's figure was the result of a huge increase in the number of people who reported that they were working. The figure was also accompanied by a strong increase in the number of people in the labor force. Another unambiguous sign of labor market improvement is the the percentage of people who are working is the highest that it has been in two years.

Estimates from the employer survey indicate that 114,000 non-farm jobs were added on a seasonally-adjusted basis last month. Taken by itself, that would be a so-so figure, but the report also revised employment growth from July and August upwards by an additional 86,000 jobs. The Department of Labor also reported last week that the year's employment figures will likely by revised upward by another 300,000 to 400,000 jobs beyond that.