• Total non-farm payroll employment edged up 75 thousand in May, following an increase of 224 thousand in the previous month, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Private-sector payrolls increased by 90 thousand in May, while government employment decreased by 15 thousand. Monthly job gains have averaged 164 thousand in 2019, compared with an average gain of 223 thousand per month in 2018. In May, employment continued to trend up in professional and business services and in health care.
  • The unemployment rate remained at 3.6% in May. The unemployment rate was 3.8% in May 2018.
  • The number of unemployed edged up by 64 thousand to 5.888 million. The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks or more) increased by 68 thousand to 1.298 million and accounted for 22.4% of the unemployed.
  • The labor force participation rate held steady at 62.8% in May, and employment-population ratio was unchanged at 60.6%.
  • The average workweek of all employees on private nonfarm payrolls was unchanged at 34.4 hours.
  • In May, average hourly earnings of all employees on private nonfarm payrolls increased by 6 cents to $27.83. Over the past 12 months, average hourly earnings were up 3.1%.
  • New orders for manufactured goods decreased 0.8% in April, following a 1.3% increase in the previous month. Shipments decreased 0.5%, following a 0.2% increase in the previous month. Year-to-date new orders were up 1.6%, and shipments were up 2.6%.
  • In April, international trade deficit in goods and services was $50.8 billion, down $1.1 billion from March. Exports decreased $4.6 billion to $206.8 billion, and imports decreased $5.7 billion to $257.6 billion. The cumulative deficit was $205.4 billion for the first four months of 2019, compared with a deficit of $201.3 billion for the same period of the previous year.
  • Non-farm business sector labor productivity increased 3.4% during the first quarter of 2019, following a 1.3% increase in the previous quarter, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor. Unit labor costs decreased 1.6%, following a 0.4% decrease in the previous quarter. Productivity in the non-farm business sector increased 2.4% from the first quarter of 2018, and unit labor costs also decreased 0.8%.
  • The advance figure for initial claims for unemployment insurance was unchanged at 222 thousand in the week ending June 1. The 4-week moving average was 215 thousand, a decrease of 2.5 thousand from the previous week’s average. The advance number for seasonally adjusted insured unemployment (ongoing) during the week ending May 25 was 1,682 thousand, an increase of 20 thousand from the previous week’s revised level. The 4-week moving average was 1,672.75 thousand, a decrease of a thousand from the previous week’s revised average.

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