“Live from New York! It’s Saturday Night!” Most Americans perk up when they hear the opening of this legendary sketch comedy. If you’re in the HR or recruitment space — or just a curious bystander — your adrenaline may start pumping when you hear this catchphrase on the first Friday of the month: “Live from New York! It’s Jobs Friday!” (Don’t worry, we think that makes you pretty cool.)
So cool, in fact, that we’ll read dozens of news reports and scour the Web following each month’s jobs report and break it down to three key talking points for you. Whether you’re taking a break at the office water cooler or conversing with peers in the industry, you’ll have three conversation starters in your back pocket.
Let’s kick it off with today’s big news:
- The unemployment rate fell. According to the latest numbers from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. employers added 169,000 jobs in August, bringing the unemployment rate down ever so slightly from 7.4 percent in July to 7.3 percent in August. We’ll take what we can get, right?
- Fewer people are looking for jobs. Much fewer. A whopping 312,000 dropped out of the labor force in August. That caused the labor participation rate to drop down to 63.2 percent, the lowest it has been since the summer of 1978.
- June and July numbers had to be revised significantly. (Oops!) Put together, the employment gains for June and July were revised down by 74,000 from what was originally reported. If you want to break it down, June’s numbers were revised from 188,000 to 172,000, while July’s numbers were revised from 162,000 to 104,000.
Follow us on Twitter @CBforEmployers and live tweet with us starting at 8:30 a.m. EST on the first Friday of every month as part of #JobsFriday.