Reclaiming Common Sense

If Good News is Recorded and Not Reported Did It Really Happen?

Most October Workers Ever - Most October Jobs Ever



We received a strong Jobs Report this Friday, in case you didn't hear about it, or the stock upward push in the stock markets, plural, after the report was released. "October Jobs Report Treat: Strong Worker Data" explained how the October data was "held back" a little because the September and August data were revised upward from their Advance and preliminary levels. Full-time jobs edged higher, as did part-time jobs. We had the most combined FT and PT jobs ever for a given month. More than the normal peak of July. Participation rose to the highest October level since 2012. That's just the Current Population Survey Data. The Current Employment Statistic (CES) worker and wages data was equally as strong.


We added 629,000 non-seasonally adjusted private sector workers last month. We saw the September data revised higher by 73,000 workers. This "deflated" the October numbers by 73,000. Not even the 556,000 worker number was reported. The headline number is the non-farm payroll data. Non-farm payroll data can be skewed by seasonal changes in government employment. Perhaps this is the reason why the "Obama Jobs Streak" was actually the Obama Seasonally Adjusted Private Sector Worker Streak.  That said, we added 131,000 seasonally adjusted (SA) CES private sector workers plus another 94,000 were added to September, so the month to  month change was 225,000 private sector workers.


Month to month Growth recorded in Workers in all but two sectors. October to October growth was recorded in all but two sectors, different sectors. There were month to month declines in Leisure and Hospitality and in Manufacturing. The drop in manufacturing is being attributed to the General Motors (GM) strike. LAH may have declined because it was the end of Summer as of Labor Day. It is interesting that we saw month to month improvement in Mining and Logging (M/L) and a decline October to October. It was a nearly identical situation with the Information Technology (IT) Sector. We are on the verge of having a record 130 million workers in the workforce.


Month to Month Growth Reported in seven sectors, with no growth or a minor drop in three sectors. There was no month to month growth in M/L and a 0.01% drop in government workers. That is as close to no change as you can get. The 0.05% drop in Other Services (OS) was a difference of 3,000 workers. These sectors could be revised upward next month. October to October growth reported in all sectors excepting Mining and Logging and IT.  The decline in M/L month to month and October to October was anticipated.


Manufacturing record a drop of 60,000 workers and reported a drop of 36,000 workers.   Round numbers are an anomaly in statistics. There were not 59,000 nor 61,000 manufacturing jobs "lost" last month. It was 60,000 on the head. Manufacturing also saw a drop in hours worked of 0.98%. The average hours worked dropped to 40.5 hours. It is anticipated that all of the 60,000 workers ill return to the workforce next month and that the hours worked will rise to offset the hours lost during the GM strike.


All Sectors received annual pay raises. All sectors say their average hourly wages rise October to October. It is possible that some of the reason for the drop in hours worked is that "many hands lighten the load." The overall picture is that average hourly wage rose by 2.92%, with a range of 1.58% to 7.21%. Average Hours worked rose by 1.23%. This means that when combined with the worker growth of 1.52% annually that real wages rose 4.28%. The changes in sectors were between 2.27% and 7.11% with Leisure and Hospitality Recording an increase of 4.85%.


Still Climbing the Worker Mountain. The non-seasonally adjusted data shows that we have a June, and July and August Peak (Summer Jobs) and a September decline. followed by a push to record worker levels during October, November, and December, followed by out annual Scrooge Slump during January.  If we had those 60,00 manufacturing workers in the workforce this month then we would have set an all-time record for non-seasonally adjusted private sector workers.


There are three sectors that have not returned to pre-recession levels - Still. You could read this column every month and this section of the report would remain relatively unchanged. We had peak IT employment during 2000. Manufacturing is still rebounding (12.83 M versus 13.21M.) Remember, these manufacturing jobs were "never" going to return to the US. Construction is building momentum (7.7 Million versus 7.9M)


This was a strong report with regard to workers. We saw August and September values revised higher from their preliminary and advance levels. We saw a better than expect private sector growth. Government recorded the addition of  371,000 workers and yet reported a drop of 3,000 workers. Wages are up. Workers are up. Earnings are up. The economy should continue growing.


Next up: "Five Presidents at 33 Months."



It's the Economy.