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Staffing industry recruiting news, advice and thought leadership.

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BLS Report – June 2023

Payroll Employment Rises by 209,000 in June; Unemployment Rate Changed Little at 3.6 Percent

Both the unemployment rate, at 3.6 percent, and the number of unemployed persons, at 6.0 million, changed little in June. The unemployment rate has ranged from 3.4 percent to 3.7 percent since March 2022.

The number of persons employed part time for economic reasons increased by 452,000 to 4.2 million in June, partially reflecting an increase in the number of persons whose hours were cut due to slack work or business conditions. Persons employed part time for economic reasons are individuals who would have preferred full-time employment but were working part time because their hours had been reduced or they were unable to find full-time jobs.

The number of persons not in the labor force who currently want a job was 5.4 million in June, little changed from the prior month. These individuals were not counted as unemployed because they were not actively looking for work during the 4 weeks preceding the survey or were unavailable to take a job.

Among those not in the labor force who wanted a job, the number of persons marginally attached to the labor force was little changed at 1.4 million in June. These individuals wanted and were available for work and had looked for a job sometime in the prior 12 months but had not looked for work in the 4 weeks preceding the survey. The number of discouraged workers, a subset of the marginally attached who believed that no jobs were available for them, decreased by 112,000 to 310,000 in June.


  • Total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 209,000 in June, as employment in government, health care, social assistance, and construction continued to trend up. Nonfarm employment has grown by an average of 278,000 per month over the first 6 months of 2023, lower than the average of 399,000 per month in 2022.
  • Employment in government increased by 60,000 in June. Employment continued to trend up in state government (+27,000) and local government (+32,000). Overall, government has added an average of 63,000 jobs per month thus far in 2023, more than twice the average of 23,000 per month in 2022. However, government employment is below its pre-pandemic February 2020 level by 161,000, or 0.7 percent.
  • Health care added 41,000 jobs in June. Job growth occurred in hospitals (+15,000), nursing and residential care facilities (+12,000), and home health care services (+9,000). Offices of dentists lost 7,000 jobs. Health care has added an average of 42,000 jobs per month thus far this year, similar to the average gain of 46,000 per month in 2022.
  • Social assistance added 24,000 jobs in June, mostly in individual and family services (+18,000). Job growth in social assistance has averaged 22,000 per month thus far in 2023, in line with the average of 19,000 per month in 2022.
  • Employment in construction continued to trend up in June (+23,000). Employment in the industry has increased by an average of 15,000 per month thus far this year, compared with an average of 22,000 per month in 2022. In June, employment in residential specialty trade contractors continued to trend up (+10,000).
  • Employment in professional and business services changed little in June (+21,000). Monthly job growth in the industry has averaged 40,000 thus far in 2023, down from 62,000 per month in 2022. Employment in professional, scientific, and technical services continued to trend up over the month (+23,000).
  • In June, employment in leisure and hospitality was little changed (+21,000). This marks the third consecutive month of little employment change for this industry. Employment in the industry remains below its February 2020 level by 369,000, or 2.2 percent.
  • Retail trade employment changed little in June (-11,000). Employment continued to decline in building material and garden equipment and supplies dealers (-10,000) and in furniture, home furnishings, electronics, and appliance retailers (-5,000). Motor vehicle and parts dealers added 6,000 jobs. Overall, employment in retail trade has shown little net change over the year.
  • Employment in transportation and warehousing changed little in June (-7,000) and has shown no clear trend in recent months. Over the month, employment edged down in couriers and messengers (-7,000) and in warehousing and storage (-7,000), while air transportation added 3,000 jobs.
  • Employment showed little or no change over the month in other major industries, including mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction; manufacturing; wholesale trade; information; financial activities; and other services.

Source: Bureau of Labor and Statistics, THE EMPLOYMENT SITUATION — June 2023