Stagnant Wage Growth Continues (Still Worst Wage Recovery After A Recession Since 1965)

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The January jobs report is out and it showed little change since the December report. That is, relatively low unemployment and abysmal wage growth.

Now, average hourly earnings YoY did increase from 2.5% to 2.8%.  But this is the first “recovery” from a recession without at least 3% earnings growth.

Total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 235,000 in February. Job gains occurred in construction, private educational services, manufacturing, health care, and mining.

In February, construction employment increased by 58,000, with gains in specialty trade contractors (+36,000) and in heavy and civil engineering construction (+15,000). Construction has added 177,000 jobs over the past 6 months.

Employment in private educational services rose by 29,000 in February, following little change in the prior month (-5,000). Over the year, employment in the industry has grown by 105,000.

Manufacturing added 28,000 jobs in February. Employment rose in food manufacturing (+9,000) and machinery (+7,000) but fell in transportation equipment (-6,000). Over the past 3 months, manufacturing has added 57,000 jobs.

Health care employment rose by 27,000 in February, with a job gain in ambulatory health care services (+18,000). Over the year, health care has added an average of 30,000 jobs per month.

Employment in mining increased by 8,000 in February, with most of the gain occurring in support activities for mining (+6,000). Mining employment has risen by 20,000 since reaching a recent low in October 2016.

Employment in professional and business services continued to trend up in February (+37,000). The industry has added 597,000 jobs over the year.

Retail trade employment edged down in February (-26,000), following a gain of 40,000 in the prior month. Over the month, job losses occurred in general merchandise stores (-19,000); sporting goods, hobby, book, and music stores (-9,000); and electronics and appliance stores (-8,000).

Employment in other major industries, including wholesale trade, transportation and warehousing, information, financial activities, leisure and hospitality, and government, showed little or no change over the month.

In other words, education and health services led the job additions. Along with construction.

Alas, food services and drinking places only added 16.7 thousand jobs.

 

 

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