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July 2023 Employment Situation Summary

  • Publish Date: Posted 12 months ago
  • Author: Kelly O'Neill

​​Each month, the Bureau of Labor Statistics releases the latest data and info regarding employment in the United States. Our team collects this data and breaks it down so you can understand the situation today and anticipate what's to come.

Key Findings for the July 2023 Jobs Report:

Total Nonfarm Payroll Employment: There was an increase of 187,000 in July. In the last 12 months, we've seen in average increase of 312,000 new jobs per month. While this number is significantly lower, don't sound the alarm just yet. In fact, most economic experts point to this as an indication that we're entering a "more sustainable" period of growth that can help us stave off a serious economic recession down the line.

Unemployment Rate: The rate remained relatively stable at 3.5%. July’s 3.5% unemployment rate is consistent with data reported since early 2022. Together, low unemployment and stability in the unemployment rate are contributing to a steady economy. This is great news.

Temporary Layoffs: We saw a significant decrease in the number of persons on temporary layoff, dropping by 175,000 to 667,000 in July. Again, great news. This is the lowest level we've seen in nearly a year. a 42% drop from the number of layoffs announced in June and an 8% decrease from 12 months ago. As you likely know, several industries were hit hard this year when it comes to layoffs. For comparison, we've seen 481,906 job cuts announced in the first seven months of 2023 compared with 159,021 through the same period in 2022, according to Reuters.

Labor Force Participation: Labor force participation was consistent at 62.6% for the fifth consecutive month. Some experts would like to see this number increase, but there isn't too much room for improvement. The highest the labor force participation has ever been, back in 2007, was 66.4%.

Part-time Employment: 4.0 million individuals were employed part-time for economic reasons in July. These are individuals who would have preferred full-time positions but were either given reduced hours or couldn't find full-time opportunities.

So, What Does This Mean?

All things told, the employment situation in July 2023 showed steady growth in several industries, with the overall unemployment rate remaining stable. What we've seen for July paints a picture of stability and resiliency for the economy as a whole. We're less likely to enter into a serious recession than we previously thought.

The stability of the overall unemployment rate, hovering around 3.5%, is particularly encouraging. This rate, which has remained consistent since March 2022, suggests that the job market has found its equilibrium after potential disruptions. Such stability is crucial for consumer confidence, business investments, and overall economic planning.

As layoffs continue (albeit, at a slowed rate) and the economy remains stable, job seekers are less willing to settle for any role that will take them. With inflation decreasing and buying power increasing, those without current employment can (and will) be more selective about the roles they accept, simply because they can afford to be unemployed for longer now.

Don't let your organization fall behind due to a lack of qualified candidates to fill your critical roles. Contact us today to tap into our deep network of niche-specific talent, eager and able to work for you.