U.S. unemployment rate hits 3.5%; job growth moderate

Here & Now


From the Labor Department today that the US economy added one hundred thirty six thousand new jobs in September signaling that despite a a dismal report about manufacturing earlier in the week the US economy remains relatively buoyant. Mike Reagan is senior editor of Bloomberg News Mike. It's good to speak with you. You Superior and president trump seems pretty pleased with these numbers today. Let's listen the unemployment. Numbers just came out three point five percent unemployment and that is a tremendous number the lowest that over fifty years and so that's the president. What are you taking away from. This report is the lowest unemployment rate in fifty years nineteen sixty nine but the growth of the job market is clearly slowing down a bit and he can't say that based on just one month's report like this but if you look at at the trend over the last three or six months we're talking about one hundred twenty two one hundred thirty thousand jobs on average added per month. That's actually like the slowest pace in more than seven years. It's among the slowest pace since the last recession but it is still growth in the recession at the worst of the recession. We were losing like eight hundred thousand jobs so it is enough to to sort of knock that unemployment rate down a little bit more and we noticed the increase in worker pay. Hey was also down yeah a little bit lower. you know after coming up to some of the highest levels in the of this business cycle down the doubt back down to below three percent so not the most fantastic sign either earlier this week the. Dow dropped five hundred points following a some news on manufacturing numbers that had a lot of people worried they showed showed manufacturing in this country is at its weakest level in ten years so help us understand. Why are those numbers so low but these job numbers don't seem to be as effective. I mean again as you say we still added one hundred thirty six thousand jobs to the economy so this sort of temperature her of the manufacturing sector comes from a report by the Institute for Supply Management and this is the second straight month that it's shown the manufacturing industries are actually actually shrinking and the thing about manufacturing is it's only about twelve percent of the economy the worry is that that weakness will all spread into the much bigger services sector of the economy and in fact the ISM's report on service industries actually was very weak still growing but just barely and falling to the lowest weakest level in about three years so it is starting to look like there is a a little bit of contagion from manufacturing into the services sector but it is still growing and it hasn't quite enough to really damage the job numbers to significant significant there are so many reports out there are so many statistics and you can read them in so many different ways it just it's like it's hard to make sense of what yardstick we should be using to measure the health health of this economy. I absolutely and you know I think you ask the question what was causing this weakness in manufacturing the ice report basically points at the trade tensions and that is such a big question mark for the economy because it's something that could be resolved instantly or near instantly and we just don't. I don't know if and when that will happen so you look at these numbers and you think while they're weak now but as soon as we reach a trade deal with China they'll turn around but but it's just so many unknown so much uncertainty surrounding when that may big picture tends to evolve over time and become more clear we'll see Mike Regan senior editor Bloomberg News. Thanks for your time. Thank spear

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