Tepid September Job Growth Expected

Tomorrow the U.S. Department of Labor is expected to report that fewer than 100,000 — as few, says one estimate, as 60,000 —  new jobs were created in September. While that’s an improvement over August’s no-growth report, it’s not going to change the unemployment rate, which has hovered around 9.1 percent since May.

Wednesday, payroll processor ADP and its partner Macroeconomic Advisers reported that 91,000 private sector jobs were created in September. That was the same number initially reported by ADP for August. (The September report adjusted downward that number to 89,000.)

While the ADP National Employment Report rarely tracks closely with the government’s official numbers, it’s seen by economists as an indicator of what the report from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics may show. Taken with other reports out this week, there’s a sense that tomorrow’s numbers won’t move the needle.

“You have to characterize labor-market conditions as tepid and disappointing,” Bloomberg quoted Joel Prakken, senior managing director of Macroeconomic Advisers, as saying. “There is an element of structural unemployment that persists.”

This morning, the Institute for Supply Management reported that economic activity in the service sector grew in September for the 22nd consecutive month. It was off slightly from August, but still above the level indicating contraction.

However, the Institute’s Employment Index decreased 2.9 percentage points to 48.7 percent in September. It was the first decline in 12 months and signals a reduction in hiring.

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Earlier this week, outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas said employers in September announced plans to layoff 115,730 workers, more than double the  51,114 announced in August. It was the largest number of layoffs, the firm said, in two years.

The Conference Board, which monthly counts the number of current and new jobs advertised online, said September’s count was 43,500 below August’s. Since March, the number of advertised vacancies has dropped by half-a-million.

There are 10 million more unemployed workers than there are jobs advertised online, the Conference Board said.

John Zappe is the editor of TLNT.com and a contributing editor of ERE.net. John was a newspaper reporter and editor until his geek gene lead him to launch his first website in 1994. He developed and managed online newspaper employment sites and sold advertising services to recruiters and employers. Before joining ERE Media in 2006, John was a senior consultant and analyst with Advanced Interactive Media and previously was Vice President of Digital Media for the Los Angeles Newspaper Group.

Besides writing for ERE, John consults with staffing firms and employment agencies, providing content and managing their social media programs. He also works with organizations and businesses to assist with audience development and marketing. In his spare time  he can be found hiking in the California mountains or competing in canine agility and obedience competitions.

You can contact him here.


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