U.S. Nonfarm Payrolls up 1.371 Mln in August, Boosted by Census

imageEconomic Indicators9 hours ago (Sep 04, 2020 08:37AM ET)

(C) Reuters.

By Geoffrey Smith

Investing.com — The U.S. economy added 1,371 million nonfarm jobs in August, roughly in line with expectations, in further evidence of a gradual recovery from the disastrous second quarter.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics said that private payrolls rose 1.027 million, more than twice the estimate of ADP that was published on Wednesday. However, that was still short of expectations for a rise of 1.20 million.

The overall employment numbers were boosted by around 238,000 related to hiring for the 2020 census.

The unemployment rate fell more sharply than expected, to 8.4% of the working population from 10.2% in July. Adult participation in the labor force edged up to 61.7 from 61.4.

“A good job report, but skewed by temporary census hiring,” said Roberto Perli, Head of Global Policy Research at Cornerstone Macro via Twitter. Perli, a former Federal Reserve staffer, said the survey “doesn’t change much” from the Fed’s point of view. Fed Chairman Jerome Powell had announced a major change in strategy last week by downgrading the importance of current inflation and attaching more weight to unemployment, a more concrete illustration of slack in the economy.

Among the unemployed, the number of persons on temporary layoff decreased by 3.1 million in August to 6.2 million, down considerably from as much as of 18.1 million in April.However, the number of losing their jobs permanently increased by 534,000 to 3.4 million; this measure has risen by 2.1 million since February, the BLS said. "Under the new framework the Fed wants to minimize shortfalls from maximum employment," Perli said. "With permanent job losses rising similar to 2008, that won't be reached any time soon." Aside from those losing their jobs, the BLS noted the number of people working reduced hours due to economic circumstances fell by 871,000 in the month to 7.6 million.That's still up considerably from 3.3 million in February.

U.S. Nonfarm Payrolls up 1.371 Mln in August, Boosted by Census

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