September Job Growth Comes in Below Expectations, But Unemployment Drops to Lowest Level in Almost 50 Years

October 5, 2018

Nonfarm payrolls for September increased by 134,000, according to Labor Department figures released today. This number is well below the 185,000 increase that economists had expected. The increase was the smallest since September 2017.

Despite a smaller than expected increase, the unemployment rate declined to 3.7 percent for the month, down from 3.9 percent in August. This marks the lowest unemployment rate since December 1969.

The Labor Department also revised the previous two month’s jobs reports. August’s initial count was revised up significantly, from 201,000 to 270,000.  July’s numbers were also revised up, from 147,000 to 165,000. These revisions bring the three-month average up to 190,000, and the 12-month average to 201,000.

The Labor Department also reported that the average hourly wage increased 2.8 percent year-over-year.

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