Economy adds a meager 103,000 jobs in September, unemployment steady at 9.1%

The U.S. economy added 103,000 jobs in September, according to data released today by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The unemployment rate remained steady at 9.1%. The numbers are seasonally adjusted.

Adding jobs is obviously better than losing them, but job creation is too slow to keep up with population growth, much less to make any dent in the millions of jobs that the economy shed during the recession.

Let me pick up on a few details from today’s report:

  • U-6 unemployment, which counts total unemployed, plus all persons marginally attached to the labor force, plus total employed part time for economic reasons, as a percent of the civilian labor force plus all persons marginally attached to the labor force, saw a seasonally adjusted increase from 16.2% to 16.5%
  • “Among the major worker groups, the unemployment rates for adult men (8.8 percent), adult women (8.1 percent), teenagers (24.6 percent), whites (8.0 percent), blacks (16.0 percent), and Hispanics (11.3 percent) showed little or no change in September. The jobless rate for Asians was 7.8 percent, not seasonally adjusted.”
  • “Since April, payroll employment has increased by an average of 72,000 per month, compared with an average of 161,000 for the prior 7 months. In September, job gains occurred in professional and business services, health care, and construction. Government employment continued to trend down.”
  • “Government employment continued to trend down over the month (-34,000). The U.S. Postal Service continued to lose jobs (-5,000). Local government employment declined by 35,000 and has fallen by 535,000 since September 2008.”
  • There were significant upward revisions to previous months: “The change in total nonfarm payroll employment for July was revised from +85,000 to +127,000, and the change for August was revised from 0 to +57,000.”

Here’s an updated graph from Calculated Risk: