A major surge in hiring in July has sparked fresh optimism about the power of the economic recovery. The unemployment rate reached a new pandemic period low, and hiring continues to rebound in leisure and hospitality.
Jobs Report Highlights
- The unemployment rate dropped to 5.4% which is the lowest it has been since the pandemic began
- Companies are scrambling for strategies to attract and retain top talent. See more here.
- The Delta variant remains a concern for economic recovery and the impact on return-to-office plans
- The strong numbers can be attributed to good growth, strong consumer spending, a rebound in major industries like hospitality and travel, and a strengthen desire for business investment.
- Wages for all workers have continued to trend upward.
Major Growth Sectors of the Economy
- July saw a substantial jobs boost in leisure and hospitality of380,000. Two-thirds of the job gain was in food services and drinking places (+253,000). Employment also continued to increase in accommodation (+74,000) and in arts, entertainment, and recreation (+53,000).
- Local government education saw an increase of 221,000 jobs in July, plus a gain of 40,000 jobs in private education.
- The professional and business services sector added 60,000 jobs in July. This sector includes professions such as accounting and bookkeeping services, management and technical consulting services, and scientific research and development services.)
- Transportation and warehousing added 50,000 jobs in July. Job growth occurred in transit and ground passenger transportation (+19,000), warehousing and storage (+11,000), and couriers and messengers (+8,000).
- Health care added 37,000 jobs in July. Job gains in ambulatory health care services (+32,000) and hospitals (+18,000) more than offset a loss of 13,000 jobs in nursing and residential care facilities.
- Employment in manufacturing increased by 27,000 in July, largely in durable goods manufacturing. Within durable goods, job gains occurred in machinery (+7,000) and miscellaneous durable goods manufacturing (+6,000).
- Employment in retail trade changed little in July (-6,000), following large increases in the prior 2 months. In July, job gains in gasoline stations (+14,000), miscellaneous store retailers (+7,000), and nonstore retailers (+5,000) were more than offset by a loss in building material and garden supply stores (-34,000).
- In July, average hourly earnings for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls increased by 11 cents to $30.54, following increases in the prior 3 months. Average hourly earnings for private-sector production and nonsupervisory employees also rose by 11 cents in July to $25.83. The data for recent months suggest that the rising demand for labor associated with the recovery from the pandemic may have put upward pressure on wages.
Tips on Navigating Hiring Post-COVID
Develop the talent you already have: As the labor market tightens, there are ways of making more of the employees you already have. Read more…
Find out what perks really motivate retention: Money definitely matters, but there are other things that make good employees stay. Read more…
Create a “talent acquisition strategy”: this will help you identify gaps in your skills base and hire the right individuals to fill them. Read more…