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Jobless Rate Down; U.S. Adds 18,000 Temp Jobs

December 07 2012

The U.S. jobless rate edged down to 7.7 percent in November and the number of temp jobs rose by 18,000, or 0.7 percent, to approximately 2.56 million, according to seasonally adjusted numbers released today by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The temporary penetration rate rose to 1.91 percent in November from 1.90 percent in October.

Year-over-year, the number of temporary help services jobs rose by 182,800.

Total U.S. nonfarm employment rose by 146,000 in November for a total of almost 133.9 million jobs, according to seasonally adjusted numbers. Since the beginning of this year, employment growth has averaged 151,000 per month, about the same as the average monthly job gain of 153,000 in 2011.

The college-level unemployment rate remained unchanged at 3.8 percent in November, after dropping in October from September’s 4.1 percent figure. The college-level unemployment rate can serve as a proxy for professional employment.

Industries adding jobs in November included retail trade, up 53,000; professional and business services, up 43,000; and healthcare, up 20,000.

Employment in the “employment services industry” rose by 3,800 jobs to approximately 3.21 million. The employment services industry is a broad category that includes temporary help services as well as jobs in employment placements agencies, executive search services and professional employer organizations.

Hurricane Sandy did not substantively impact the national employment and unemployment estimates for November.

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