In the month of July, employment gains were concentrated in
retail trade, health care, professional and technical services,
and financial activities.
Employment in retail trade increased by 36,000 in July and
has risen by 322,000 over the year. Employment continued to
trend up in merchandise/retail (up by 6,000 new jobs), and the
auto industry also showed signs of growth, adding 13,000 new
jobs in July. Fiscal Times reports,
“The fairly healthy employment report added to robust
July automobile sales and service industries data is suggesting
the economy continues to gather momentum after growing at a 2.3
percent annual rate in the second quarter.”
Health care added 28,000 jobs in July and has added 436,000
jobs over the year. In July, employment in hospitals rose by
16,000 new jobs, more than doubling June's numbers. However,
this isn't necessarily an indicator of overall industry
strength for the year. Modern Healthcare reports,
"Hospitals, so far, have struggled to find traction in
hiring this year. The sector added 14,200 jobs in May, but that
slipped 4.7% from April's job additions. And in March, the
sector added only 7,900 jobs, plummeting 19.4% from February's
9,800 additions. But that was a 16.9% decrease from the 11,800
jobs hospitals added in January."
Professional & Technical Services
In Professional and Technical services, 27,000 jobs were
added in July. The BLS reports, “Over the past 12 months,
professional and technical services has added 301,000 jobs.
Management of companies and enterprises added 14,000 jobs over
In Financial Services, 17,000 jobs were added in July.
156,000 jobs have been added in this area over the past 12
months. The top sector in this field was Insurance, which
accounted for over half of new jobs created (10,000 in July).
There have been about 85,000 Insurance-related job gains over
the past year.
For the month of June, Nebraska had the lowest jobless rate
in June with 2.6%. West Virginia had the highest rate at 7.4%.
18 states had unemployment rates that were significantly lower
than the U.S. average of 5.3%. 11 states, including D.C., had
notably higher rates. 21 states were not significantly
different from the U.S. average.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the Midwest had
the lowest regional unemployment rate in June with 5.0%, while
the West had the highest rate, 5.8%. Over the month, the
Northeast had the only statistically significant unemployment
rate change. Over-the-year rate decreases occurred in all four
regions: the West, Midwest, and Northeast and South.
The Mid-Atlantic region reported an average unemployment
rate of 5.8%. Pennsylvania remained unchanged with a rate of
5.4% and Virginia also remained unchanged with 4.9%, but the
remaining states displayed changes in unemployment rates. West
Virginia increased in unemployment from 7.2 to 7.4% and
Delaware increased from 4.6 to 4.7%. Maryland and the District
of Columbia decreased from 5.3 to 5.2% and from 7.3 to 7.0%,
The Midwest region reported an average unemployment rate of
5%. Minnesota was the only state the report an increase, from
3.8 to 3.9%. Iowa, Illinois, and Indiana all reported a
decrease in their unemployment rates. Michigan, North Dakota,
South Dakota, Nebraska, and Ohio remained unchanged.
The Mountain-Plains region reported an average unemployment
rate of 4.4%, up from 4.3% the previous month. Kansas and
Colorado showed a slight increase in unemployment, from 4.4 to
4.5% and from 4.3 to 4.4%, respectively. Montana, Wyoming, and
Missouri remained unchanged.
The New England region reported an average unemployment rate
of 4.7%, down by 0.1% from last month's report. Maine, Vermont
and New Hampshire, and Massachusetts remained unchanged at
4.7%, 3.6%, 3.8%, and 4.6%, respectively. Connecticut and Rhode
Island each decreased in unemployment rates: Connecticut
dropped from 6.0% to 5.7%, and Rhode Island decreased by 0.1%,
from 6.0 to 5.9%.
New York, New Jersey, Puerto Rico
The New York, New Jersey, Puerto Rico region reported an
average unemployment rate of 8.0%, down from last month's
report of 8.2%. New York and New Jersey decreased unchanged
from 5.7 to 5.5% and from 6.5 to 6.1%, respectively. Puerto
Rico increased from 12.4 to 12.6%.
The Southeast region reported an average unemployment rate
of 5.9%. Most states reported a decrease in unemployment;
nearly all reporting just a slight 0.1% increase apart from
Alabama, which remained unchanged at 6.1%. North Carolina did
report an increase, from 5.7 to 5.8%.
The Southwest region reported an unemployment rate of 5.4%,
unchanged from last month's report. New Mexico, and Oklahoma
displayed an increase in unemployment, from 6.2 to 6.4% and 4.3
to 4.5%, respectively. Texas, Arkansas and Louisiana each
reported a decrease in unemployment - from 4.3 to 4.2%, 5.8 to
5.7%, and 6.6 to 6.4%, respectively.
The Western region reported an average unemployment rate of
5.6%, unchanged from last month's report. Washington, Nevada,
California and Hawaii each decreased by 0.1%. Oregon, Idaho and
Alaska reported an increase, from 5.3% to 5.5%, 3.9% to 4.0%,
and from 6.7 to 6.8%, respectively.