Payrolls expanded by 136,000 jobs in September, leaving employment 1.4% ahead of its level a year earlier. So far in 2019, employment has expanded by a monthly average of 160,800 jobs. During the first nine months of 2018, payrolls added an average of 219,900 jobs per month.1
- The unemployment rate dropped from 3.7% to 3.5% in September. The last time it was lower was in May 1969, or more than 50 years ago.1
- A slight decline in September’s average hourly earnings snapped a string of 22 monthly increases. Earnings are up 2.9% over a year ago.1
- After posting a 15.1% increase in August, total housing starts in September retreated 9.4% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.256
million units. In 2018, construction started on 1.250 million units.2
- All of the month’s housing starts decline came from the multifamily component, which tumbled 28.2% in September after surging 41.4% in August. Single-family starts followed August’s 5.1% gain with a 0.3% improvement in September. Single-family starts account for about 70% of total housing starts.
Read more: Keeping Current 10.18.19