Jobs Numbers Improved In May, But Still Missed Expectations

June 4, 2021

Job creation disappointed in May, with the economy adding 559,000 new jobs, according to the Labor Department. Economists had expected an increase of 671,000.

This follows on April’s big disappointment, and though April’s numbers were revised upward slightly to 278,000, that is still far short of the 1 million jobs economists had expected.

Another month of missed expectations, albeit by a much smaller margin, has fueled concerns that ongoing enhanced unemployment benefits are disincentivizing workers from returning to work. Though hospitality, which has seen the most visible labor shortage, led the way in job creation, adding 292,000 new jobs.

Some investors have taken the measured rate of job growth as a positive, as it lessens the likelihood that The Federal Reserve will change its stance on asset purchases and interest rates.

Despite the disappointment with the headline number of jobs added, the unemployment rate beat expectations, falling to 5.9% in May, down from 6.1% in April.

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