US Economy Adds 272,000 Jobs in May, Surpassing Economists’ Expectations

by John Nelson

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Total nonfarm employment in the United States increased by 272,000 jobs in May, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). This figure exceeds the predictions of Dow Jones economists who anticipated a more modest increase of 190,000, according to CNBC. The May total also surpasses the rolling 12-month average of 232,000 jobs.

The BLS also reports the U.S. unemployment rate rose slightly to 4 percent, the first time that the rate has eclipsed that mark since January 2022. Additionally, the BLS has made slightly downward revisions for employment in March and April, with 5,000 fewer reported in March (now 310,000 jobs total) and 10,000 fewer in April (now 165,000).

Healthcare led all sectors in May, adding 68,000 jobs, which is in line with its average 64,000 jobs added over the prior 12 months. Within the healthcare category, employment grew in ambulatory health care services (+43,000), hospitals (+15,000) and nursing and residential care facilities (+11,000).

Other employment sectors experiencing growth include government (+43,000); leisure and hospitality (+42,000); professional, scientific and technical services (+32,000, which is nearly double its monthly average of +19,000 over the prior 12 months); and social assistance (+15,000).

Employment showed little or no change month-to-month in other major industries, including mining, quarrying and oil-and-gas extraction; construction; manufacturing; wholesale trade; transportation and warehousing; information; and financial activities.

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