Here’s the official release:  

Nonfarm payroll employment edged down (-95,000) in September, and the unemployment rate was unchanged at 9.6 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Government employment declined (-159,000), reflecting both a drop in the number of temporary jobs for Census 2010 and job losses in local government. Private-sector payroll employment continued to trend up modestly (+64,000).

The number of unemployed persons, at 14.8 million, was essentially unchanged in September, and the unemployment rate held at 9.6 percent.

Let’s delve deeper into the Employment data:

•Private-sector payroll employment continued to trend up (+64,000) over the month;

• Government employment fell by 159,000, including 77,000 temporary Census 2010 workers.

• Average workweek was unchanged at 34.2 hours;

• Average hourly earnings of all employees on private nonfarm payrolls increased by 1 cent to $22.67. Over the past 12 months, average hourly earnings have increased an anemic by 1.7% percent;

• Temporary workers increased to 16,900; the pattern of adding temps is decelerating, which often bodes poorly for future hiring prospects.

• Gainers included Health care (24k), Professional services (28k), Mining (+6k); Construction fell (-21k), while manufacturing, wholesale trade, retail trade, transportation and warehousing, information, and financial activities were flat.

• The civilian labor force participation rate, at 64.7%, and the employment-population ratio, at 58.5%, were unchanged. (Hence, why the Unemployment rate was unch).

• Involuntary part-time workers: Up 612,000 to 9.5 million; Over the past 2 months, such workers have increased by 943,000.

Long term unemployment remains an ongoing negative:

• In September, 41.7 percent of unemployed persons had been jobless for 27 weeks or more.

• The number of long-term unemployed (jobless for 27 weeks +) is 6.1 million, unchanged from last month but was down by 640,000 since May 2010 peak of 6.8 million.

• ~2.5 million persons were marginally attached to the labor force in September, up from 2.2 million a year earlier.

• About half of the marginally attached group (1.2 million) are “discouraged workers,” an increase of 503,000 from a year earlier.

All told, a mediocre report. Employment woes continues to be a head wind for the economy

Originally published at The Big Picture and reproduced here with the author’s permission.