May 2009 Jobs Report and Wages

Here are the job market and compensation numbers for May 2009 (based on the job report):

loss of 345,000 jobs in the month (revised to a final loss of 347,000)

  • Analysts expected a loss of 520,000
  • Seventeen straight months of job losses
    • 14.5 persons unemployed

  • March was revised to loss of 652,000 jobs (revised to a final loss of 753,000)
  • April was revised to a loss of 504,000 jobs (from 539,000. revised to a final loss of 582,000)
  • Long term unemployed increased 3.9 million persons (people out of work longer than 27 weeks)
    • This number has tripled since Dec 2007

  • Smallest loss in 8 months

Unemployment rate rose to 9.4%

  • Analysts predicted a rise to 9.2%
  • 26 year high (and the calculation for this was changed in the early 90s)
  • Since the recession began in December of 2007, the unemployment rate has risen 4.5%

Specific Segment Job numbers:

  • Manufacturing lost 156,000 jobs
  • Construction lost 59,000 jobs
  • Retailers lost 18,000
  • Temporary Work lost 6,500 jobs
  • Leisure and Hospitality Services gained 3,000 jobs
  • Government sector lost 7,000
    • This sector carried the jobs report last month, so this means the jobs picture is really getting healthier

  • Health care grew by 24,000 jobs


  • The average weekly paycheck (seasonally adjusted) is $613.67
    • An decrease of $1.19
  • The average hourly earning (seasonally adjusted) is $18.54
  • The average hourly work week was down 0.1 to 33.1
  • Over the last 12 months, earnings are up 3.1%

Bureau of Labor Statistics

Job Report Stats Summary


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