The jobless rate fell to 7.9% in September, the Department of Labor announced on Thursday. Last month, the economy added 661,000 jobs. In August, 1.4 million jobs were added, bringing the unemployment rate to 8.4%. Prior to March, the jobless rate hovered around 3.5%, (a fifty year low), before skyrocketing to 14.7% in April as the coronavirus pandemic took hold.
Leisure and hospitality saw the biggest gain again this month adding 318,000 positions added. Manufacturing roles expanded by 356,000. Despite job growth totaling 3.8 million over the last 5 months, employment in food services and drinking places is down by 2.3 million since February. Retail trade and health-care related jobs also saw an increase with 142,000 and 108,000 jobs added.
Transportation jobs increased by 74,000 in September, with gains continuing in warehousing and storage, transit and ground transportation and couriers and messengers all adding jobs. According to the report, although the transportation industry has added 291,000 jobs since may, employment in transportation is currently sitting 304,000 jobs lower than in February.
345,000 layoffs became permanent last month, bringing total permanent job losses to 3.8 million.
While millions more remain unemployed, September’s jobs report shows that around 12 million jobs have been recovered since the mid-March economic shutdown that saw about 22 million layoffs, so that is a positive note ahead of the Presidential election next month.