Unemployment lowest since 1969

Unemployment lowest since 1969

The Labor Department's closely watched monthly employment report today also showed a steady rise in wages, suggesting moderate inflation pressures.

On the flip side, the economy only added 134,000 jobs last month, down from 201,000 in August. However, overall, the economy added a lower number of jobs than expected.

Newly released data by the Labor Department shows that United States employers added 134,000 jobs last month with hiring increases within construction, manufacturing and health care sectors. "There is little in this report to stop the Fed continuing to raise interest rates gradually". Pointing to the economy's health, the Fed last week raised its benchmark short-term rate and predicted that it would continue to tighten credit into 2020 to manage growth and inflation.

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.

"No-one at the Fed thinks unemployment near three percent is sustainable", Ian Shepherdson of Pantheon Macroeconomics said in a client note. Workers are counted as employed as long as they show up for part of their pay period.

Average hourly earnings rose by 0.3% in September, as expected, and the same as the preceding month. The unemployment rate may increase slightly in the near term, but will remain below four percent through the rest of 2018 and reach 3.5 percent by early 2019.

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An Institute for Supply Management survey of manufacturers published on Tuesday showed factory activity retreated from a 14-year high in September. Roughly 1.5 million people reported being unable to work because of the weather.

USA stock index futures briefly turned positive after the data before reversing course.

Asian unemployment increased to 3.5 percent while white unemployment dropped to 3.3 percent, the lowest since December 1969.

So far this year, the average number of jobs created each month is 16 percent higher than last year.

Wage growth has been slow for months compared to otherwise robust economic metrics. "We'll see in earnings season how much of an impact it will have on profit markets as labor is a business's biggest cost".

Last month, employment in the leisure and hospitality sector fell by 17,000 jobs, the first drop since September 2017, with payrolls at bars and restaurants tumbling by 18,200.

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Retailers had the worst month for hiring, as the sector lost 20,000 jobs.

The weakness in payrolls last month is not corroborated by other labor market data.

Job gains were noted in healthcare, up 26,000, transportation and warehousing, up 24,000, and construction, up 23,000.

Washington last month slapped tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods, with Beijing retaliating with duties on $60 billion worth of US products.

Despite the Trump administration's protectionist trade policy, the trade deficit continues to deteriorate.

The unemployment rate for those with a high school degree and no college attendance hit 3.7 per cent, the lowest since April 2001. The deficit in the trade of goods with China and Mexico hit records. The August reading was the highest since February.

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