US nonfarm employment increases as temp jobs decrease.
According to seasonally adjusted data released today by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of temporary help services jobs in the US decreased by 10,700 in March to nearly 3.05 million. However, total nonfarm employment increased by 236,000 in March, with the total number of jobs at almost 155.6 million.
Barry Asin, the president of Staffing Industry Analysts, stated that slower gains in overall employment suggest that the Fed’s strategy to cool the economy is working. Despite the ongoing tightness in much of the labor market, it is encouraging to see growth in the labor force and the highest level of labor force participation since the start of the pandemic. Meanwhile, the decrease in temporary help employment is consistent with slower growth for the labor market in the future.
Today’s data shows that the temp penetration rate, which is the percentage of temp jobs in total employment, fell to 1.96% in March from 1.97% in February.
Over the past six months, the US had an average monthly gain of 334,000 nonfarm jobs. The agency noted that in March, employment continued to trend upward in leisure and hospitality, government, professional and business services, and healthcare.
The BLS revised down the previous nonfarm job numbers reported in January and February, with 17,000 fewer nonfarm jobs and 2,100 fewer temp jobs combined.
In March, the unemployment rate decreased to 3.5% from 3.6% in February. Meanwhile, the college-level unemployment rate remained at 2.0% in March, unchanged since January.
The average hourly earnings for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls increased by nine cents to $33.18. For production and nonsupervisory employees, the increase was also nine cents to $28.50.