Employment Rises in July

Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 943,000 in July, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Total unemployed persons fell by 782,000 to 8.7 million in July, and the unemployment rate decreased to 5.4%.

Most of the job gains in July were in leisure and hospitality, in local government education, and in professional and business services.

Employment in leisure and hospitality increased by 380,000. Two-thirds of the job gain was in food services and drinking places (+253,000). Employment also continued to increase in accommodation (+74,000) and in arts, entertainment, and recreation (+53,000). Despite the gains, employment in leisure and hospitality is down by 1.7 million, or 10.3%, from its level in February 2020.

The civilian labor force participation rate was little changed at 61.7%. Persons on temporary layoff fell by 572,000 to 1.2 million in July. This measure is down considerably from the high of 18.0 million in April 2020 but is 489,000 above the February 2020 level. Workers with permanent job loss declined to 2.9 million.

Read the BLS release.