US Economy Added 559,000 Jobs in May, Lower Than Economists’ Expectations
WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. economy added 559,000 jobs in May, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported Friday. This figure is lower than predicted, as economists surveyed by Dow Jones had expected the report to show a gain of 671,000 jobs, according to the CNBC. The BLS also revised the April job gains to increase from 266,000 to 278,000. Meanwhile, the unemployment rate declined from 6.1 percent in April to 5.8 percent in May, which was better than estimates of 5.9 percent.
The BLS report for May showed notable job gains in the leisure and hospitality sector, which added 292,000 jobs, as pandemic restrictions on businesses eased last month. For May, nearly two-thirds of the jobs increase were in the food and drinking industry. Jobs in recreation, gambling and amusements also increased by 58,000. Compared to February 2020, jobs in leisure and hospitality are still down by 15 percent or 2.5 million jobs.
Last month, 16.6 percent of people still worked remotely. As people go back to working in an office or in-person schooling, jobs in the private and public education increased. In local government education, jobs increased by 53,000. In state government education, there was an increase by 50,000 jobs, and in private education, jobs increased by 41,000.
Jobs in the healthcare and social assistance industry also saw an increase in May, with a gain of 46,000 jobs. Healthcare employment increased by 23,000. With adults going back to the office and the need of childcare help rising, social assistance, especially child daycare, saw an increase by 23,000 jobs in total.
While many industries flourished in May, some did not. For example, construction employment decreased by 20,000 jobs. Construction is also still 225,000 jobs lower than it was in February 2020. Additionally, employment changed little last month in industries such as mining and financial activities.