July 2008 Jobs Report and Wages

Here are the job market and compensation numbers for July 2008 (based on the job report):

Net loss of 51,000 jobs in the month (revised to a loss of 67,000 jobs in September 08)

  • Analysts expected a loss of 75,000
  • June was changed to a loss of 51,000 from an estimate of 62,000 and May
    was modified to a loss of 47,000 jobs
  • seventh straight months of job losses
  • Since the early spring the rate of job losses is slowing

Unemployment rate rose to 5.7% 

  • Forecasters thought it would raise to 5.6%
  • Underemployment is now at 10.3%
    • Highest since 2003 and more than 2% higher than a year ago
  • Worst reading since March of 2004
  • The rate is now up 1% since a year ago and over 0.7% over the last three months alone
  • Those that are unemployed for longer than 6 months now makes up 19.1% of the unemployed, up from 18.4% in June

Specific Segment Job numbers:

  • Construction lost 22,000 jobs
  • Professional and Business Services lost 24,000
  • Manufacturing lost 35,000 jobs
  • Health Care added 33,000
  • Government sector added 25,000
  • Leisure and hospitality added 1,000


  • The seasonally adjusted average hourly wage increased 6 cents to $18.06
  • Inflation is up 5% over the last 12 months
    • Average hourly earnings over the past 12 months is 3.4% (same as June)
    • For rank and file workers, the 12 month growth of paychecks is 2.8% (same as June)
  • The number of hours worked dropped from 33.7 hours to 33.6 from June to July
  • Workers who are now part time instead of full time in their current job rose to 3.7 million
    • Highest in more than 50 years
  • People who can’t find a full time job so are working a part time job rose to 5.3 million
    • This is up over 1 million over the last year
    • This is 3.7% of those employed – highest since 1995


  • GDP has to be around 2.5% growth for the generation of jobs.
  • GDP for the second quarter of 2008 was 1.9% (revised to 3.3%)

Job Report Stats Summary


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