Labor Market Continues Summer Momentum

After falling the most on record in April, the US labor market has rebounded with three consecutive months of job gains, adding back more than 9 million of the 22 million jobs lost in March and April. In July, the economy added back nearly 1.8 million jobs, ahead of Bloomberg consensus estimates for 1.5 million and lowering the unemployment rate from 11.1% to 10.2%, but lingering measurement issues could add 1% to that number, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

As shown in the LPL Chart of the Day, job gains were broad based across industries, with a third of the increase coming from the leisure and hospitality sector—the “scene of the accident” industries—while only information, and mining and logging posted declines in July.

View enlarged chart.

“March and April were historically brutal months for the labor market, but the labor market’s resiliency this summer has been a welcome development,” stated LPL Chief Investment Officer Burt White. “However, the next few months will be critical for the economy as schools reopen and additional fiscal stimulus still hangs in the balance.”

The July report also comes on the heels of a rise in COVID-19 cases across the Sunbelt region of the United States. Because of the date of the survey, it may not fully reflect the economic impact of some of the more recent high-frequency data that has captured some of the effect of rising cases. Still, the jobs report shows that the US economy is continuing to heal despite the long road ahead.



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