Job Market Update: July 2016 

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Non-farm payroll employment over-the-month change, seasonally adjusted, June, 2014 - June, 2016

Source: The Bureau of Labor Statistics "Employment Situation Report" for June 2016

Rebounding from May’s dismal employment numbers, non-farm jobs are up by 287,000 positions. Though job growth is trending positively, the unemployment rate rose by .2 percent. Several sectors experienced growth including leisure, hospitality, healthcare, social assistance, finance and information.

Average hourly earnings continue to trend upward, now at $25.61, which is an increase of 2 cents in May. Over the year, average earnings have increased by 2.6%.

The number of jobs added in April 2016 was revised from +123,000 to +144,000, and the May count worsened, moving from +38,000 to +11,000. These revisions have resulted in a difference of -59,000 jobs than were previously. Gains have still averaged 116,000 per month over the past 3 months.

In Your Industry

After minimal growth in May, June’s spike of 287,000 should be a relief. Most industries experienced moderate to high growth in June. Over the year, the United States has experienced relatively strong job growth despite the recent dip. Reflecting a shift in the nature of our economy, more professional sectors that rely on employees with college degrees continue to grow. This growth balance losses occurring in labor-intensive industries. Mining experienced a net loss of 6,000 jobs. Construction and Manufacturing saw little to no change.

Construction experienced no change in June following May’s loss of 15,000 jobs. Building construction (-3,700) and Heavy civil engineering (-3,900) continued to experience intense loss. While specialty trade contractors counterbalanced that loss, it wasn’t enough to create a positive trend in Construction.

Manufacturing, Saw gains of 14,000 jobs in June, which was a rebound to the modest losses (-10,000_ it suffered in May. Small gains and losses occurred in the Durable goods subsector. Nondurable goods were responsible for a large portion of overall growth, due in large part to Food manufacturing (13,000). Textiles, printing, plastics, apparel, chemicals and paper all experienced minimal losses, resulting in a combined decrease of approximately 2,000 jobs.

Retail trade's continued to recover from losses in April by adding 29,900 jobs in June. Once again, general merchandise supported a large portion of that growth, up by 8,700. Food/ beverage and health/personal care stores also added 6,300 and 5,400 jobs respectively.

Transportation and warehousing suffered modest losses, down by -9,400. Truck transportation and transit /ground passenger transportation was responsible for a large portion of the industry’s overall losses, down by about 6,000 jobs each. Warehousing and storage balanced some of the loss, adding 4,700 jobs.

Professional and business services grew significantly compared to May’s modest gains by adding 38,000 jobs. Nearly every subsector added jobs again. The largest gains were in Professional and technical services (+17,800). After May’s loss, Administrative and waste services added 16,300 jobs.

Education and health services is one of the strongest sectors of the economy once again. Continuing an overwhelming positive trend, this sector added 59,000 positions to the economy. Healthcare and social assistance sectors continue to support that largest portion of this growth with +58,400 jobs. Also notable was Social services adding 19,900 jobs.

Hospital added 15,000 jobs in June, reflecting healthcare’s steady employment growth.

Leisure and hospitality matched the growth of Education and Healthcare in the month on June, also increasing by 59,000 positions. Accommodation and food services added more jobs than the previous month (+31,100). Arts and Entertainment recovered from the previous month’s decreases, up by 27,200 job loss.

Temporary help services is rebounding, gaining 15,200 jobs.

In Your Region

For the most part, regional and state unemployment rates held steady in June. Unemployment rates increased significantly in 5 states, decreased in 4 and remained the same in 41. When compared to the previous year, 16 states have seen an increase in employment.

The joblessness rate is lower than May of 2015 and was down 0.3 percentage points between April and May of 2016. During May the West was the only region that had an unemployment rate significantly different than the national average.

The West North Central region continues to have the lowest unemployment rate, at 3.8%. The East North Central region had the highest rate, 5.3%. South Dakota (2.5%) and New Hampshire (2.7%) had the lowest jobless rates in May. Arkansas set an all time low again of 3.8%. During May, 16 states had unemployment rates that were significantly lower than the national average.

Check out these key regional highlights from the BLS “Regional and State Employment and Unemployment –May 2016" report.


The Mid-Atlantic region’s unemployment rate held steady at 5%. New York’s unemployment fell 2% to 4.7%. New Jersey also experienced an increase from 4.7% to 4.9%. Pennsylvania is the highest with 5.5% percent, also increasing. This region hovers was .3% higher than the national average in May.


The Midwest unemployment rate decreased from 4.9% to 4.8% and is within 0.1% of the rate in May 2015. Illinois maintain the highest unemployment rate in the region at 6.4%, a .2% decrease from the previous month.

North Dakota (3.2), South Dakota (2.5), Nebraska (3.0), Michigan, Minnesota (3.8), Iowa (3.9) and Kansas (3.7) all have unemployment rates at or below 4.0%. Missouri (4.3%) and Wisconsin (4.2%) have rates lower the national average. Michigan is at May’s national unemployment rate. The Detroit metro area’s unemployment is falling, going from 5.6% to 5.2%. Illinois, Indiana and Ohio experience rates high enough to balance the extremely low rates of several Midwestern states.


The New England region’s unemployment rate is holding at 4.4%. Over the year, the joblessness rate dropped by nearly 0.6%. Vermont (3.1%), New Hampshire (2.7%), Maine (3.5%) and Massachusetts (4.2%) have extremely low unemployment rates. New Hampshire and Maine experienced minor increases of 0.1% each. Adding balance, Connecticut (5.7%) and Rhode Island (5.4%) both have unemployment rates well above the national average of 4.7%.


The South’s unemployment rate fell 0.1% to 4.8% month-over-month. The West South Central region’s joblessness rate is lower than the national average by 4.6%. The South Atlantic (4.8%) and East South Central (5.0%) regions both have unemployment rates above the national average. Texas (4.4%), Arkansas (3.8%), Virginia (3.8%) and Tennessee (4.1 percent) have the lowest unemployment rates of the region. Most of these states experience a 0.1% decline.


The West continues to have the highest unemployment rate in the country at 5.1%. Year-over-year, the West's unemployment rate has dropped by nearly a percentage point from 5.9%. Colorado’s unemployment rate is up from 3.1% to 3.4%. While Washington (5.8%), Nevada (6.1%), Wyoming (5.6%), Arizona (5.6%) and New Mexico (6.2%) have some of the highest and are well above the national average.