Unemployment Rate Falls 3.7%, a 49-Year Low

07 October, 2018, 09:51 | Author: Mary Valdez
  • The American Economy Added Just 134,000 Jobs in September Unemployment Drops to Lowest Level Since 1969		AFP5 Oct 2018

The September jobs report released today shows a continuation of the booming labor market, with the unemployment rate falling to the 49 year low of 3.7 percent.

Nonfarm payrolls rose 134 000 after a 270 000 gain the prior month that reflected a large upward revision, a Labor Department report showed Friday.

Florence-related flooding and damage in North Carolina and SC was expected to influence the data, though on a smaller scale than the 2017 disruptions from hurricanes Harvey and Irma.

The good news does not necessarily mean that Americans are being paid better, however - the average hourly wage was up just 2.8% compared to the same time past year.

"The labor market remains healthy, and we think the Goldilocks scenario of decent economic growth with tame inflation is poised to continue", said Aaron Anderson, head of research at Fisher Investments in San Francisco.

That higher pay is likely to trim corporate profit margins, however. The yield on the government's 10-year Treasury note, a benchmark for mortgages and other loans, has touched its highest level in seven years.

Fed Chairman Jerome Powell said on Tuesday that the economy's outlook was "remarkably positive" and he believed it was on the cusp of a "historically rare" era of ultra-low unemployment and tame inflation.

"The markets could give this a little bit of a pass cause it's not clear what impact the hurricane had at the moment". This is the sixth straight month the unemployment rate has been at or below four percent, also the best in a half century. Some companies are starting to boost wages - Amazon.com Inc. being among the latest to pledge raises - to attract or retain workers. Measures of consumer confidence are at or near their highest levels in 18 years. That's despite hiring being slower than expected in September.

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(Kitco News) - Gold prices are holding relatively steady, hovering above the psychological level of $1,200 an ounce as the US labor market showed a mixed picture last month.

Americans have continued spending steadily and appear to be in generally stable financial shape.

Ian Shepherdson, the chief economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics, predicted that the jobless rate will fall as low as 3.25 percent by this time next year, strengthening the case for the US Federal Reserve to keep raising interest rates.

Barrera said she has also seen data that show more people are going straight from not being in the labor force to being employed, bypassing the "unemployed" status altogether. Sales of existing homes have fallen over the past year, held back in part by higher mortgage rates. Auto sales have also slumped.

A month ahead of hard-fought congressional elections, the result was sure to delight US President Donald Trump, who has eagerly taken credit for America's extended run of economic expansion even as his Republican party faces a possible rebuke from disenchanted voters.

Still, should the tariffs remain fully in effect a year from now, roughly 300,000 jobs could be lost by then, according to Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody's Analytics.

Professional and business services remained the economy's strongest sector, with a cumulative 560,000 jobs added over the past year.

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