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US unemployment rate rises despite economy adding jobs

Unemployment Benefits
Posted at 7:40 AM, Sep 02, 2022
and last updated 2022-09-02 09:30:53-04

Despite 315,000 jobs being added in the U.S. in August, the national unemployment rate increased by .2% to 3.7%.

The biggest culprit: The number of Americans not in the labor force declined in August. Nearly 600,000 Americans attempted to rejoin the labor market. With more Americans also of working age, the total size of the U.S. workforce grew by 786,000 Americans in August.

The workforce includes people currently employed or looking for jobs.

In addition to older Americans rejoining the labor market, nearly 300,000 workers aged 16-19 entered the workforce.

The national workforce participation rate increased by .3% to 62.4%. The labor participation rate, however, remains below pre-pandemic levels.

All told, there were nearly 442,000 more employed Americans in August compared to July. There were also 344,000 additional Americans collecting unemployment benefits during the month.

One industry not seeing as much growth is leisure and hospitality. The industry added 31,000 jobs following average monthly gains of 90,000 in the first sevens months of the year, the Bureau of Labor Statistics noted. Employment in leisure and hospitality is below its February 2020 level by 1.2 million, or 7.2 percent, the BLS said.