Up 3.3% From a Year Ago. Temporary help employment grew robustly, adding 28,000 jobs over the month of July, according to seasonally adjusted data released by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Staffing employment increased 0.9% from June to July and was 3.3% higher than in July 2017. Year-to-year staffing job growth has averaged 3.5% per month in the first seven months of 2018, significantly higher than the average of 2.2% for all of 2017.
Nonseasonally adjusted BLS data, which estimate the actual number of jobs in the economy, indicated that temporary help employment decreased 0.7% from June to July. Year to year, unadjusted, there were 3.3% more staffing employees in July than in the same month last year.
Total U.S. nonfarm payroll employment rose by 157,000 jobs in July (seasonally adjusted), BLS reported. Incorporating revisions for May and June, job gains averaged 224,000 per month over the past three months, higher than the average of 203,000 for the prior 12 months.
“The ‘help wanted’ signs are still out all across America, with hiring increases in 2018 exceeding growth in the comparable periods of 2016 and 2017,” said Richard Wahlquist, ASA president and chief executive officer. “And for the foreseeable future, finding ways to narrow the skills gap continues to be a top priority for employers.”
The unemployment rate edged down from 4.0% in June to 3.9% in July.
BLS also released preliminary June employment data for search and placement services, which, seasonally adjusted, ticked up 0.3% from May. Search and placement jobs totaled 311,200 in June, 4.1% higher than in the same month last year.
Source: American Staffing Association