September 7, 2018

August 2018 Jobs Report

Unemployment Rate: 3.9 percent

Jobs Created: 201,000

Employment and Unemployment

  1. The Department of Labor reported an unemployment rate of 3.9 percent for August.

  2. The report shows an increase of 201,000 nonfarm jobs in August. Sectors with job gains include professional and business services (53,000), health care (33,000), and wholesale trade (22,000).

  3. This gain is in line with the average monthly job gain in the past 12 months of 196,000.

  4. The U.S. has created 1.654 million new jobs since the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act became law.

  5. The U-6 rate, a measure of unemployed and underemployed workers, fell to 7.4 percent, a 17-year low. By this measure, 12 million Americans are unemployed. They include people who are unemployed (6.2 million), want work but have not looked for a job recently (1.4 million), or are working part time because they cannot find full-time employment (4.4 million).  

  6. The median length of unemployment was 9.1 weeks in August, down from 10.3 weeks a year ago.

  7. The number of long-term unemployed, those unemployed for 27 weeks or more, was 1.3 million, down 403,000 from a year ago. They account for 21.5 percent of the unemployed.

Labor Force Participation

  1. The labor force participation rate was 62.7 percent, down 0.2 percentage point from July. It remains below the pre-recession rate of 66 percent.


  1. In August, average hourly earnings for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls rose by 10 cents to $27.16. It is a 77-cent, or 2.9 percent, gain from a year ago.

Issue Tag: Labor