It’s Labor Day: Here’s the State of the Jobs Market

As it’s Labor Day, here are a few facts about the U.S. jobs market.

• The unemployment rate was 5.1% in August. While officials say that understates the number of Americans who want work but have given up trying, it’s historically on the low side, as it’s below the 5.6% median since the Labor Department starting keeping track in 1948.

• There were 149 million people employed last month, and 8 million looking for a job.

• The labor-force participation rate of 62.6% was tied for a nearly 38-year low, reflecting the aging of the population, more people studying for degrees, and those who have given up looking for a new job.

Market Watch

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Craig Erlam

Craig Erlam

Senior Currency Analyst at OANDA
Based in London, England, Craig Erlam joined OANDA in 2015 as a Market Analyst. With more than five years' experience as a financial market analyst and trader, he focuses on both fundamental and technical analysis while conducting macroeconomic commentary. He has been published by The Financial Times, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal and The Telegraph, and he also appears regularly as a guest commentator on networks including Sky News, Bloomberg, CNBC and BBC. Craig holds a full membership to the Society of Technical Analysts and he is recognized as a Certified Financial Technician by the International Federation of Technical Analysts.