Economists React to the September Jobs Report

United States – September Jobs Report: In September 2017, the US economy lost 33,000 jobs while the unemployment rate fell to a new post-crisis low of 4.2%.

This is the first negative print for headline payroll gains since September 2010 while the unemployment rate is now at its lowest level since February 2001.

 Today’s report also broke a 90-month streak of private sector job growth.

 Economists had expected that nonfarm payrolls would grow by 80,000 during the month with the unemployment rate expected to remain steady at 4.4%.

 This report, however, was impacted by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma.

 In its release, the Bureau of Labour Statistics said a sharp employment decline in food services and drinking places and below-trend growth in some other industries likely reflected the impact of Hurricanes Irma and Harvey.

 Federal Reserve officials had also made clear in recent weeks that they would look past any distortions to this number cause by the Hurricane.  A bright spot in the report was average hourly earnings, which in September jumped sharply higher, rising 0.5% over the prior month and 2.9% over the prior year.

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