Labor market adds to weak outlook

Labor market adds to weak outlook

By Thomas Cooley, Ben Griffy and Peter Rupert

The Bureau of Labor Statistics provided some additional bad news with employment increasing only 160,000 for the month of April. The private sector gained 171,000 however, with government shedding 11,000. Moreover, previous estimates were also revised down,  March 208,000 from 215,000 and February from 245,000 to 233,000. Mining employment continued its decline, down 8,000. empchgm-2016-05-06

Average weekly hours were up from 34.4 to 34.5 and average hourly wages ticked up.

The household survey also provided evidence of weakness: the unemployment rate remained essentially unchanged at 4.99%, the labor force fell 362,000 and the participation rate fell by 0.2%.


The household survey and establishment survey moved in decidedly different directions, with employment from the household survey falling 316,000.


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