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August Jobs Report: Manufacturing Adds 22,000 Jobs

Sept. 2, 2022
The overall economy added 315,000 jobs, but the unemployment rate rose to 3.7%.

Manufacturing employment trended up in August 2022. According to the latest report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics at the Department of Labor, the U.S. manufacturing sector hired 22,000 more people in August, mostly in the durable goods industries. The Bureau reported that manufacturing has added 461,000 new jobs so far over the year.

In the overall economy, the unemployment rate rose slightly to 3.7% despite payroll employment increasing by 315,000. In his monthly statement on the report, U.S. Labor Secretary Marty Walsh characterized the jobs growth as a transition from recovery into “steady and stable progress.”

The larger part of manufacturing, durable goods, added the lion’s share of new jobs last month. Durable goods industries—notably fabricated metal products, computers and electronics, nonmetallic mineral products and machinery companies—added a total of 19,000 jobs.

Fabricated metals added approximately 4,700 jobs, while computers and electronics added 4,500.

While transportation equipment companies, representing the largest sector of durable goods employment, hired 2,400 more workers, the motor vehicles and parts sector notably shed almost 2,000.

Nondurable goods companies added a slim net 3,000 workers in August, and most sections of the nondurable industries saw similarly slim gains or losses. Growth in the chemicals industry of 3,500 more workers and 1,200 in apparel manufacturing were the sectors recording the biggest gains, but they were offset by losses elsewhere.

Food manufacturing, by far the largest employer in nondurable goods, lost 2,400 employees, followed by apparel companies, which lost 1,000.

Average hourly earnings for manufacturing employees were flat in August, according to preliminary figures: Friday’s report indicates that average manufacturing wages last month were the same as they were in July, $30.95 an hour. Average wages for durable goods remained flat at $32.51 an hour, while nondurable goods wages actually fell by 2 cents to $28.32.

The average hourly earnings for all employees rose by 10 cents to $32.36 during August, a monthly increase of 0.3%.

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