The economy lost another 263,000 nonfarm payroll jobs in September, pushing the unemployment rate up to 9.8%, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Friday. The largest job losses were in construction, manufacturing, retail trade, and government.
The number of jobless has risen by 7.6 million to 15.1 million and the unemployment rate has doubled since the recession began in December 2007, the Labor Department said. Including people marginally attached to the workforce, the unemployment rate was 17%.
The unemployment rate was highest among teenagers at 25.9%, followed by blacks at 15.4%, Hispanics at 12.4%, whites at 9% and Asians at 7.4%. The rate for adult men was 10.3%; for adult woman it was 7.8%.
Construction employment was down by another 64,000 jobs, bringing the total number of jobs lost in construciton to 1.5 million since the onset of the recession. Monthly job losses averaged 66,000 from May through September, compared with an average of 117,000 per month from November to April. The September job losses came mostly in nonresidential construction (-39,000) and heavy construction (-12,000).
Among other categories, employment in manufacturing fell by 51,000, raising the total jobs lost due to the recession to 2.1 million. Retail dropped 39,000 and government was down 53,000, more than half of the latter coming in non-education local government jobs.
Health care, however, continued rising, adding 19,000 jobs. The category has gained 559,000 jobs since the recession began.
Average hourly earnings of non-supervisory workers rose 0.1%, or 1 cent, to $18.67. Over the past 12 months, average hourly earnings have risen by 2.5%; average weekly earnings have risen by only 0.7 percent due to declines in the average workweek.
The Labor Department also revised the July job loss estimate from -276,000 to -304,000 and August -216,000 to -201,000.