Hiring surged unexpected in January, traditionally a slower month for job growth, with an addition of over half a million jobs. This rate exceeded the monthly average gain of 400,000 in 2022.
Additionally, the Bureau of Labor Statistics released new data on the number of jobs available per unemployed American, which has risen to 1.9, another bellwether of a tight labor market.
Inflation has been cooling slightly, but remain quite high by historical standards.
Despite headline-grabbing tech layoffs, the pace of layoffs remains historically low overall.
These gains increase the pressure on the Fed to raise interest rates, and in turn complicate the idea of a “soft landing” from rampant inflation.
Hospitality, Professional Services and More: Inside the January Jobs Report
Job growth was led by gains in leisure and hospitality, professional and business services, and health care.
Leisure and hospitality is rebounding strongly, with an addition of 128,000 jobs in January compared with an average of 89,000 jobs per month in 2022.
Over the month, food services and drinking places added 99,000 jobs, while employment continued to trend up in accommodation (+15,000).
Professional and business services touted a gain of 82,000 jobs, led by gains in professional, scientific, and technical services (+41,000).
Health care added 58,000 jobs in January. Job growth occurred in ambulatory health care services (+30,000), nursing and residential care facilities (+17,000), and hospitals (+11,000). In 2022, health care added an average of 47,000 jobs per month.
Employment in retail trade rose by 30,000 in January, following little net growth in 2022 (an average of +7,000 per month). In January, job gains in general merchandise retailers (+16,000) and in furniture, home furnishings, electronics, and appliance retailers (+7,000) were partially offset by a decline in health and personal care
Construction added 25,000 jobs in January, reflecting an employment gain in specialty trade contractors (+22,000). Employment in the construction industry grew by an average of 22,000 per month in 2022.
What this means for companies looking to make executive hires
Common questions from our clients pertain to navigating economic uncertainty against rapidly inflated salary expectations in a tight labor market. Our tips on navigating this challenging environment are here: Salary Talk: Coping with Inflation and its Impact on Recruiting
Catch Up With Previous Jobs Reports
- Steady gains in December 2022
- Growth in November 2022
- Resilience in October 2022
- Mixed messages in September 2022
- August 2022’s cooling forecast
- Great job news in July 2022
- Continued growth in June 2022
- Strong growth in May 2022
- Big month of growth in April 2022
- March 2022’s strong growth
- February 2022’s blockbuster growth
- January 2022’s strong growth despite Omicron
- Promising news for hospitality in December 2021
- November 2021’s mixed picture
- October 2021’s robust gains
- A slower-than-expected report in September 2021
- The summer‘s roaring recovery trajectory in 2021
- Better than expected growth in June 2021, especially in travel
- A turnaround in May 2021
- An anemic April 2021 jobs report