Economic Update: The Jobs Report

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that Nonfarm Payrolls, which is one of the most closely followed gauges regarding the state of the economy, grew by just 142,000 new jobs during the month of September.

The number of new jobs was well below the consensus estimates for an increase of 206K and was below August’s revised job growth of 223K.

As usual, there were revisions to the prior two months’ reports. July’s report saw a decrease of 22K from 245K to 223K while August’s job totals were revised lower by 37K to 136K from 173K.

This means the economy created 59,000 fewer new jobs in the prior two months than had been previously reported.

The nation’s Unemployment Rate held steady at 5.1% in September which was in line with expectations and the lowest rate seen since March 2008.

The Labor Force Participation Rate was fell to 62.4% from 62.6% last month. As a reminder, the current participation rate is the lowest level seen since October 1977.

Average weekly earnings were reported at 34.5, which was below the consensus expectations for an increase of +34.6 and last month’s reading of 34.6.

Hourly wages rose 2.2% over the last 12 months, which remains well below the average increase of wage growth at this stage of an economic cycle.

All in all, the report was weaker than expectations and creates concern about the state of both the U.S. and Global economies. Stock futures moved lower in response to the report.