Up 3.2% From a Year Ago. Temporary help employment edged up 0.3% from May to June, and was 3.2% higher than in June 2017, according to seasonally adjusted data released by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Year-to-year staffing job growth has averaged 3.6% per month in the first six months of 2018, significantly higher than the average of 1.4% for the first half of 2017. However, BLS’s initial estimates on seasonally adjusted temporary help services employment data tend to be downwardly revised, according to an American Staffing Association analysis of BLS data.
Nonseasonally adjusted BLS data, which estimate the actual number of jobs in the economy, indicated that temporary help employment increased 1.1% from May to June. Year to year, unadjusted, there were 3.1% more staffing employees in May than in the same month last year.
Total U.S. nonfarm payroll employment rose by 213,000 jobs in June (seasonally adjusted), BLS reported. Incorporating revisions for April and May, job gains averaged 211,000 per month over the past three months, higher than the average of 200,000 for the prior 12 months.
After reaching an 18-year low of 3.8% in May, the unemployment rate increased to 4.0% in June.
“On the ninth anniversary of the Great Recession’s end, the labor force participation rate ticked up slightly in June as more new job seekers entered the workforce and pushed up the unemployment rate,” said Richard Wahlquist, ASA president and chief executive officer. “However, with a record high level of 6.7 million job openings, employers across most sectors continue to face serious difficulties in sourcing qualified talent.”
BLS also released preliminary May employment data for search and placement services, which, seasonally adjusted, contracted 0.8% from April. Search and placement jobs totaled 309,600 in May, 3.4% higher than in the same month last year.
Source: American Staffing Association