Employers added 150,000 jobs in October, down from 297,000 in September, as the unemployment rate ticked up one-tenth of a point to 3.9% while the pace of hiring slowed, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Friday.
Most of the job gains happened in the health care, government and social assistance sectors, while employment declined in manufacturing due to strike activity in the automotive industry. The professional and business services sector added 15,000 jobs, including 300 in accounting, tax preparation, bookkeeping and payroll services. Average hourly earnings rose by 7 cents, or 0.2%, to $34.00. Over the past 12 months, average hourly earnings have increased by 4.1%.
“The latest US jobs report for the accounting sector reveals a positive shift with an increase of 300 jobs between September and October, marking a notable turnaround from the previous month’s decrease,” said Julie Bonness, senior vice president of global strategic partnerships at Sapro, which provides workforce talent to public accounting firms. “While last month’s report noted a dip of 400 jobs, it’s important to view these fluctuations in the context of the broader growth trend seen throughout the year. The accounting profession has consistently demonstrated resilience, and this change appears to be a result of normal market fluctuations rather than a significant downturn, reinforcing the sector’s overall strength and stability.”
The Labor Department also revised downward the job gains it had previously reported for August and September. The August number was revised down by 62,000, from 227,000 to 165,000, and September’s unexpectedly strong number was revised down by 39,000, from 336,000 to 297,000. With both revisions, employment in August and September combined was 101,000 lower than previously reported by the BLS.