October Jobs Report
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment increased by 261,000 in October. Monthly job growth has averaged 407,000 thus far in 2022, compared with 562,000 per month in 2021, signalling a bit of a slowdown as the Fed hikes interest rates. In October, notable job gains occurred in health care, professional and technical services, and manufacturing.
The October jobs report was another story of strong job growth and economic resilience, which was somewhat surprising given the Fed rate hikes and persistent signals of a potential coming recession. Economists generally expected a job gain of 200,000 jobs so this increase represented stronger growth than was forecast based on current economic conditions.
Key takeaways from the October Jobs Report
- Strong growth in manufacturing is another signal of a resilient economy
- Hospitality and leisure continue to rebound
- The job market is still hot with stiff competition for top candidates
- Job growth is slowing a little bit but far more slowly than economists were expecting
- Economists expect to see the Fed continue to hike rates aggressively until they see more of an obvious slowdown
Major layoffs in tech
The tech sector has been dealing with a lot of internal upheaval, market uncertainty, and supply chain issues which have led to some notable mass layoffs including Twitter slashing 50% of headcount subsequent to Elon Musk taking ownership of the social media company. Facebook’s parent company, Meta, has announced a 13% workforce reduction, while home listing site Zillow is axing 5% of its workforce and bike and technology maker Peloton cutting 12%.
Manufacturing looking robust
Manufacturing added 32,000 jobs in October, mostly in durable goods industries (+23,000). This is an encouraging economic sign after an industry has been beset by numerous supply chain issues. Manufacturing employment has increased by an average of 37,000 per month thus far this year, compared with 30,000 per month in 2021.
Other October Jobs Report Highlights
- Employment in health care rose by 53,000 in October, with gains in ambulatory health care services (+31,000), nursing and residential care facilities (+11,000), and hospitals (+11,000). In 2022, health care employment has increased by an average of 47,000 per month, compared with 9,000 per month in 2021.
- Professional and technical services added 43,000 jobs in October. Employment continued to trend up in management and technical consulting services (+7,000), architectural and engineering services (+7,000), and scientific research and development services (+5,000). Monthly job growth in professional and technical services has averaged 41,000 thus far in 2022, compared with 53,000 per month in 2021.
- Employment in social assistance increased by 19,000 in October and is slightly below (-9,000) its pre-pandemic level in February 2020. Within social assistance, employment in individual and family services continued to trend up in October (+10,000).
- Wholesale trade added 15,000 jobs in October. Employment in wholesale trade has increased by an average of 17,000 per month thus far in 2022, compared with 13,000 per month in 2021.
- Employment in leisure and hospitality continued to trend up in October (+35,000), with accommodation adding 20,000 jobs. Employment in food services and drinking places changed little over the month (+6,000). Leisure and hospitality has added an average of 78,000 jobs per month thus far this year, less than half of the average gain of 196,000 jobs per month in 2021.
Catch Up With Previous Jobs Reports
- Mixed messages in September
- August’s cooling forecast
- Great job news in July
- Continued growth in June
- Strong growth in May
- Big month of growth in April
- March’s strong growth
- February’s blockbuster growth
- January’s strong growth despite Omicron
- Promising news for hospitality in December
- November’s mixed picture
- October’s robust gains
- A slower-than-expected report in September
- The summer‘s roaring recovery trajectory
- Better than expected growth in June, especially in travel
- Strong signs of recovery in May
- An anemic April jobs report