559,000 Jobs Added in May, Unemployment Rate at 5.8%

Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 559,000 in May, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Total unemployed persons decreased to 9.3 million in May, and the unemployment rate decreased to 5.8%.

Most of the job gains in May were in leisure and hospitality, in public and private education, and in health care and social assistance.

Employment in leisure and hospitality increased by 292,000, as pandemic-related restrictions eased in some parts of the country. Nearly two-thirds of the increase was in food services and drinking places (+186,000). Despite the gains, employment in leisure and hospitality is down by 2.5 million, or 15.0% since February 2020.

The civilian labor force participation rate was unchanged at 61.6%. Persons on temporary layoff fell 290,000 in May to 1.8 million. This measure is 1.1 million higher than the level a year earlier but is down considerably from the recent high of 18.0 million in April 2020. Workers with permanent job loss decreased to 3.2 million.

Read the BLS release.