The US gained 24,500 temp jobs in October, the biggest month-over-month gain since November of 2014, according to seasonally adjusted data from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. Meanwhile, the US also posted the largest month-over-month gain in total nonfarm employment for the year.
The number of temp jobs rose 4.13% on a year-over-year basis in October, ending a downward trend that began in June.
The temp penetration rate — temp jobs as a percent of total nonfarm jobs — rose to 2.05% in October, matching an all-time high set in June.
For total nonfarm employment, the US added 271,000 jobs in October. That compares to an average monthly gain of 230,000 for the last three months, according to the BLS.
Job gains occurred in professional and business services, health care, retail trade, food services and drinking places, and construction. Employment in mining continued to trend down, losing 5,000 jobs in October and 109,000 jobs since reaching a recent employment peak in December 2014.
The gain in total nonfarm jobs was the biggest this year, Bloomberg reported. The increase exceeded all estimates in its survey of 75 economists, whose median forecast called for an advance of 185,000 in payrolls.
“It’s a solid labor market,” said Michael Feroli, chief US economist at JPMorgan Chase & Co. in New York told Bloomberg. “The report is pretty good across the board. December is now a very high likelihood for the Fed to hike rates.”
Private employers have now added 13.5 million jobs over 68 straight months of growth, the longest such streak on record, according to a statement from US Labor Secretary Thomas Perez.
The likelihood of a Fed rate hike in December increased significantly with today’s report, despite no growth in the manufacturing sector, Gad Levanon, managing director, economic outlook and labor markets at The Conference Board said in a statement.
“On top of the GDP numbers from last week, which showed continued solid growth in demand for goods and services, today’s numbers provide more confirmation that the US economy is not slowing down in the short term, thanks primarily to the consumer”, the statement said. “The rapid drop in the unemployment rate continues, dipping to 5% in October. By this time next year, we may be closer to 4% than to 5%, especially if labor force participation continues to decline.”
Levanan also noted the report includes more evidence of wage acceleration.
“Average hourly earnings accelerated to 2.5% change in the past 12 months,” he said. “More acceleration will come in 2016.”
The US unemployment rate was 5.0% in October, down from 5.1% in September. The college-level unemployment rate, which can serve as a proxy for professional employment, was unchanged month over month at 2.5%.