Payrolls Surge 528,000 - Top Expectations
August 5, 2022
nonfarm payroll employment rose by 528,000 in July, and the
unemployment rate edged down to 3.5 percent, the U.S. Bureau of
Labor Statistics reported today. Job growth was widespread, led by
gains in leisure and hospitality, professional and business
services, and health care. Both total nonfarm employment and the
unemployment rate have returned to their February 2020 pre-pandemic
Wall Street was expecting 258,000
jobs with unemployment rate at 3.6% respectively.
Household Survey Data
In July, the unemployment rate edged down to 3.5 percent, and the
number of unemployed persons edged down to 5.7 million. These
measures have returned to their levels in February 2020, prior to
the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
Among the major worker groups, the unemployment rates for adult
women (3.1 percent) and Whites (3.1 percent) declined in July. The
jobless rates for adult men (3.2 percent), teenagers (11.5 percent),
Blacks (6.0 percent), Asians (2.6 percent), and Hispanics (3.9
percent) showed little change over the month.
Among the unemployed, the number of permanent job losers, at 1.2
million in July, continued to trend down over the month and is
129,000 lower than in February 2020. The number of persons on
temporary layoff, at 791,000 in July, changed little from the prior
month and has essentially returned to its pre-pandemic level.
The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks or
more) decreased by 269,000 in July to 1.1 million. This measure has
returned to its February 2020 level. The long-term unemployed
accounted for 18.9 percent of the total unemployed in July.
The labor force participation rate, at 62.1 percent, and the
employment-population ratio, at 60.0 percent, were little changed
over the month. Both measures remain below their February 2020
values (63.4 percent and 61.2 percent, respectively).
The number of persons employed part time for economic reasons
increased by 303,000 to 3.9 million in July. This rise reflected an
increase in the number of persons whose hours were cut due to slack
work or business conditions. The number of persons employed part
time for economic reasons is below its February 2020 level of 4.4
million. These individuals, who would have preferred full-time
employment, were working part time because their hours had been
reduced or they were unable to find full-time jobs.
The number of persons not in the labor force who currently want a
job was 5.9 million in July, little changed over the month. This
measure is above its February 2020 level of 5.0 million. These
individuals were not counted as unemployed because they were not
actively looking for work during the 4 weeks preceding the survey or
were unavailable to take a job.
Among those not in the labor force who wanted a job, the number of
persons marginally attached to the labor force, at 1.5 million, was
about unchanged in July. These individuals wanted and were available
for work and had looked for a job sometime in the prior 12 months
but had not looked for work in the 4 weeks preceding the survey.
Discouraged workers, a subset of the marginally attached who
believed that no jobs were available for them, numbered 424,000 in
July, little changed from the prior month.
Household Survey Supplemental Data
In July, 7.1 percent of employed persons teleworked because of the
coronavirus pandemic, unchanged from the prior month. These data
refer to employed persons who teleworked or worked at home for pay
at some point in the 4 weeks preceding the survey specifically
because of the pandemic.
In July, 2.2 million persons reported that they had been unable to
work because their employer closed or lost business due to the
pandemic--that is, they did not work at all or worked fewer hours at
some point in the 4 weeks preceding the survey due to the pandemic.
This measure is little changed from the previous month. Among those
who reported in July that they were unable to work because of
pandemic-related closures or lost business, 25.0 percent received at
least some pay from their employer for the hours not worked, little
different from the previous month.
Among those not in the labor force in July, 548,000 persons were
prevented from looking for work due to the pandemic, little changed
from the prior month. (To be counted as unemployed, by definition,
individuals must be either actively looking for work or on temporary
These supplemental data come from questions added to the household
survey beginning in May 2020 to help gauge the effects of the
pandemic on the labor market. The data are not seasonally adjusted.
Establishment Survey Data
Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 528,000 in July, larger
than the average monthly gain over the prior 4 months (+388,000).
Job growth was widespread in July, led by gains in leisure and
hospitality, professional and business services, and health care.
Total nonfarm employment has increased by 22.0 million since
reaching a low in April 2020 and has returned to its pre-pandemic
level. Private-sector employment is 629,000 higher than in February
2020, although several sectors have yet to recover. Government
employment is 597,000 lower than its pre-pandemic level.
In July, leisure and hospitality added 96,000 jobs, as growth
continued in food services and drinking places (+74,000). However,
employment in leisure and hospitality is below its February 2020
level by 1.2 million, or 7.1 percent.
Employment in professional and business services continued to grow,
with an increase of 89,000 in July. Job growth was widespread within
the industry, including gains in management of companies and
enterprises (+13,000), architectural and engineering services
(+13,000), management and technical consulting services (+12,000),
and scientific research and development services (+10,000).
Employment in professional and business services is 986,000 higher
than in February 2020.
Employment in health care rose by 70,000 in July. Job gains occurred
in ambulatory health care services (+47,000), hospitals (+13,000),
and nursing and residential care facilities (+9,000). Employment in
health care overall is below its February 2020 level by 78,000, or
Employment in government rose by 57,000 in July but is below its
February 2020 level by 597,000, or 2.6 percent. Over the month,
employment increased by 37,000 in local government, mostly in
education (+27,000). Employment in local government is below its
February 2020 level by 555,000, or 3.8 percent, with the losses
split between the education and non-education components.
Employment in construction increased by 32,000 in July, as specialty
trade contractors added 22,000 jobs. Construction employment is
82,000 higher than in February 2020.
Manufacturing employment increased by 30,000 in July. Employment in
durable goods industries rose by 21,000, with job gains in
semiconductors and electronic components (+4,000) and miscellaneous
durable goods manufacturing (+4,000). Employment in manufacturing is
41,000 above its February 2020 level.
In July, social assistance added 27,000 jobs, including a gain of
19,000 in individual and family services. Since February 2020,
employment in social assistance is down by 53,000, or 1.2 percent.
Employment in retail trade increased by 22,000 in July, although it
has shown no net change since March. In July, job gains occurred in
food and beverage stores (+9,000) and general merchandise stores
(+8,000). Retail trade employment is 208,000 above its level in
In July, transportation and warehousing added 21,000 jobs.
Employment rose in air transportation (+7,000) and support
activities for transportation (+6,000). Employment in transportation
and warehousing is 745,000 above its February 2020 level.
Information employment continued its upward trend in July (+13,000)
and is 117,000 higher than in February 2020.
Employment in financial activities continued to trend up in July
(+13,000). Employment in the industry is 95,000 above its level in
Employment in mining rose by 7,000 in July, with gains in support
activities for mining (+4,000) and oil and gas extraction (+2,000).
Mining employment is 96,000 above a recent low in February 2021.
Employment showed little change over the month in wholesale trade
and in other services.
July, average hourly earnings for all employees on private nonfarm
payrolls rose by 15 cents, or 0.5 percent, to $32.27. Over the past
12 months, average hourly earnings have increased by 5.2 percent. In
July, average hourly earnings of private-sector production and
nonsupervisory employees rose by 11 cents, or 0.4 percent, to
In July, the average workweek for all employees on private nonfarm
payrolls was 34.6 hours for the fifth month in a row. In
manufacturing, the average workweek for all employees held at 40.4
hours, and overtime increased by 0.1 hour to 3.3 hours. The average
workweek for production and nonsupervisory employees on private
nonfarm payrolls remained unchanged at 34.0 hours.
The change in total nonfarm payroll employment for May was revised
up by 2,000, from +384,000 to +386,000, and the change for June was
revised up by 26,000, from +372,000 to +398,000. With these
revisions, employment in May and June combined is 28,000 higher than
previously reported. (Monthly revisions result from additional
reports received from businesses and government agencies since the
last published estimates and from the
recalculation of seasonal factors.)