WEDNESDAY WORKFACT: Unemployment Low, Wages Rising

U.S. employers added 250,000 jobs and unemployment remained low at 3.7 percent in October ”but wage growth is the best news for workers, with pay growth topping 3 percent year over year for the first time since the Great Recession. Hourly wages climbed 3.1 percent from a year ago, while weekly pay increased by 3.4 percent, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Jobs Expansion Continues

The number of jobs grew by 1.7 percent over the past year, with employment rising in nearly all industries. Sectors showing the strongest jobs gains in October include:

Leisure and hospitality (42,000 jobs).
Health care (36,000).
Professional and business services (35,000).
Manufacturing (32,000). “There are still no signs that trade tensions are having a significant impact on manufacturing employment, although this remains an area to watch,” Wright said.
Construction (30,000).
Transportation and warehousing (25,000).

The U.S. unemployment rate is at its lowest level since 1969. New unemployment claims have fallen under 220,000 since July, reflecting the most robust labor market since at least the late 1990s. There are still over 6 million people considered unemployed, with nearly a quarter of them considered long-term unemployed (jobless for 27 weeks or longer.)

The report also showed that more workers are transitioning from part-time to full-time work, which means that job seekers are seeing   increased incomes and greater financial security. And, studies show that businesses also benefit from improved retention, performance and human capital investments.