TRENTON – New Jersey’s unemployment rate experienced its largest monthly drop on record, plunging by 0.6 percentage point to 7.8 percent in November, as employers added 16,900 jobs, according to preliminary data released by the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
Employment increases occurred in both the private (+14,100) and public (+2,800) sectors of the state’s economy in November to reach a seasonally adjusted 3,978,600, as measured by the BLS through its monthly employer survey. The long-term trend also remained positive, with private sector employment over the past year (November 2012 – November 2013) climbing by 64,400 jobs as the Garden State’s unemployment tumbled by 1.8 percentage points to hit its lowest level since January 2009.
Furthermore, since February 2010, which was the recessionary low point for private sector employment, private sector employment has increased by 155,600 jobs.
“As was the case last year, the summer doldrums in jobs seems to have vanished as the temperature has dropped and the state’s expansion has picked up its pace. Looking through the month-to-month swings, New Jersey is seeing marked, ongoing job gains. On a year-over-year basis, both construction and manufacturing jobs have moved up, joining the ongoing expansion in the service sector,” said Charles Steindel, Chief Economist for the New Jersey Department of Treasury.
In November, private sector advances were posted in six of nine major industry sectors, with gains being measured in education and health services (+7,500), leisure and hospitality (+4,000), trade, transportation and utilities (+3,400), other services (+2,500), manufacturing (+2,500) and information (+2,200). Decreases occurred in professional and business services (-6,700), construction (-1,000), and finance (-300).
Over the month, public sector employment was higher by 2,800. Increases at the local government level (+3,200) were responsible for the increase.
Over the month, the unadjusted workweek for production workers increased by 0.5 hour, average hourly earnings were higher by $0.11 to $18.86 and weekly earnings increased by $13.95 to $784.58. Compared to November of last year, the unadjusted workweek decreased by 0.7 hour, average hourly earnings increased by $0.03, and weekly earnings were lower by $11.93.
Technical Notes: Estimates of industry employment and unemployment levels are arrived at through the use of two different monthly surveys.
Industry employment data are derived through the Current Employment Statistics (CES) survey, a monthly survey of business establishments conducted by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) of the US Department of Labor, which provides estimates of employment, hours, and earnings data broken down by industry for the nation as a whole, all states, and most major metropolitan areas (often referred to as the “establishment” survey).
Resident employment and unemployment data are mainly derived from the New Jersey portion of the national Current Population Survey (CPS), a household survey conducted each month by the US Census Bureau under contract with BLS, which provides input to the Local Area Unemployment Statistics (LAUS) program (often referred to as the “household” survey).
Both industry and household estimates are revised each month based on additional information from updated survey reports compiled by BLS. In addition, these estimates are benchmarked (revised) annually based on actual counts from New Jersey’s Unemployment Compensation Law administrative records and other data.