U.S. job growth posted a stronger than expected gain in October. U.S. nonfarm payrolls increased by 638,000 for the month and the U.S. unemployment rate fell to 6.9%. Economists surveyed by Dow Jones had forecast an increase of 530,000 and an unemployment rate of 7.7% for the month.
The jobless rate decline was positive as it came with a labor force participation rate that rose 0.3 percentage points to 61.7%. An alternative measure that includes discouraged workers and those holding part-time jobs for economic reasons also declined, to 12.1% from 12.8% a month ago.
The survey of households showed an even stronger level of job growth, with the total employment level rising by 2.24 million and the employment to population ratio increasing by 0.8 percentage points to 57.4%. The household survey also showed a decline of 1.52 million in the total unemployed level and a drop of 541,000 in those considered not in the labor force.
October’s gains would have been even better were it not for the loss of 147,000 Census workers that contributed to an overall decline of 268,000 in government jobs. In all, private job creation came to 906,000, better than September’s 892,000.
Previous months’ gains saw slight upward revisions, with August increasing by 4,000 to 1.493 million and September increasing by 11,000 to 672,000.
MacDailyNews Take: Good news in U.S. job growth is good news for Apple!