NEW YORK, Nov. 4, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- A solid increase of 161,000 jobs in October, along with upwardly revised figures in September and August, confirm that the labor market is still growing robustly, even if slower than last year. This number is in line with expectations and is unlikely to affect the results of the presidential election.
Hourly earnings have grown by 2.8 percent during the past year, the fastest rate observed since the end of the Great Recession, and the unemployment rate fell back to 4.9 percent, another indication that labor markets are now sufficiently tight and firms will have to wait longer to find qualified workers for openings. Third quarter GDP numbers showed overall robust growth but were driven by temporary factors. Consumption growth slowed while business investment remained weak. This month's job numbers suggest that consumption growth should remain solid and could even pick up in the fourth quarter.
One sour note was that growth in core services jobs (excluding education and health care) slowed in October. A larger gain could have provided an early signal of strong holiday season sales. Still, the overall growth trend in these jobs is relatively strong. Whereas part of the decline in manufacturing and mining jobs relates to structural rather than cyclical factors, core services employment should expand over time, so continued growth in these job categories helps confirm that the labor market's growth trajectory remains robust.
Current employment growth continues what has been a long period of expansion. Private sector employment has now increased in 72 of the last 73 months. Combined with sustained economic growth, the current condition of the labor market is likely to provide the Federal Reserve with sufficient evidence to justify a December rate increase.
About The Conference Board
The Conference Board is a global, independent business membership and research association working in the public interest. Our mission is unique: To provide the world's leading organizations with the practical knowledge they need to improve their performance and better serve society. The Conference Board is a non-advocacy, not-for-profit entity holding 501 (c) (3) tax-exempt status in the United States. www.conference-board.org
To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/us-labor-market-sticks-to-trend-ahead-of-election-300357647.html
SOURCE The Conference Board