The U.S. economy gained 261,000 jobs in October, the Labor Department reported Friday.
The latest figure is slightly lower than September’s, but still well above economists’ forecast of a gain of 190,000 jobs.
Despite high inflation, rising interest rates, slowing economic growth and mounting anxiety about a recession in 2023, the resilient U.S. labor market saw another month of strong job creations. jobs.
Here are the sectors that have added the most workers, as well as those that are struggling to keep pace.
The Healing Market for Healthcare Workers
The health care sector led the United States last month with a gain of 53,000 workers, according to the Labor Department. A gain of 31,000 workers in doctors’ offices and hospital outpatient departments made up the bulk of the industry’s gains and contributed to a much better year for the beleaguered health care sector.
Health care hiring rebounded in 2022, bringing in an average of 47,000 new workers each month this year compared to 9,000 per month in 2021.
Economists say a combination of increased demand for non-emergency health services that has taken a back seat during the pandemic and rapidly rising wages for health care workers have helped the sector rebound.
Professional and technical services holding firm
The United States added 43,000 workers in professional and technical services last month, a broad category including consultants, architects, engineers and technicians.
Job growth in this sector can be a useful sign of changes in the economy, as these services are often in greater demand as businesses expand.
While employment growth in professional and technical services slowed slightly in 2022, October’s strong performance is another sign of the strength of the US economy in the face of many forces aimed at slowing it down.
“The jobs data shows how resilient the labor market has been in the face of stubbornly high inflation and a sharp rise in interest rates so far this year,” wrote Cailin Birch, global economist at the Economic Intelligence Unit, in an analysis on Friday.
Factories continue to build a larger workforce
The U.S. manufacturing sector has come back to life since the start of 2021 and has continued to add jobs at a healthy pace, even in the face of rising interest rates, supply chain dysfunction and consumers are misappropriated from property in the past year.
Manufacturers added 32,000 jobs in October, according to the Labor Department, slightly less than its average monthly gain of 37,000 this year. The sector faces serious threats from higher interest rates and supply shortages, but it has held strong thanks in part to a glut of demand that still lingers from the depths of the pandemic.
“Factory jobs continue to be a reliable engine of job growth, especially for workers not looking to earn a four-year degree. Investments made over the past year in infrastructure, clean energy, electric vehicles and semiconductors should continue to pay dividends in terms of jobs next year and beyond,” said Friday Scott Paul, president of the Alliance for American Manufacturing.
“But there are threats to that growth: an overzealous Fed, global headwinds, and unwanted pressure to lower tariffs and Made in America requirements.”
Leisure and hospitality offer many options
The leisure and hospitality sector is not showing as much growth as last year, when it added 196,000 jobs each month on average. But restaurants, bars, entertainment venues and accommodations still gained 35,000 jobs last month as they seek to fill a massive labor shortage.
Leisure and hospitality has been the sector hardest hit by the pandemic and it remains 1.1 million workers below its pre-pandemic employment total. Those who have stayed or joined the industry since the emergence of COVID-19 vaccines have faced increased demand with fewer colleagues to help them, while dealing with high inflation in the food sector.
“Given the continued demand for workers from businesses, job gains are unlikely to fall sharply in the near term,” Ben Ayers, senior economist at Nationwide, said in an analysis Friday.
“Job growth is expected to remain strong through 2023, while continuing to gradually slow.”
Transportation is on the move, but warehouse jobs are harder to come by
Employment growth in the transportation and warehousing sector fell sharply in October, gaining just 8,000 jobs after an average gain of 25,000 each month this year. But the split between the two is a window into the evolution of the US economy.
The industry added 13,000 workers in trucking, 7,000 couriers and messengers and 4,000 more jobs in air transport – three parts of the sector are still struggling with labor shortages and labor issues. Supply Chain.
But warehousing jobs fell by 20,000 in October as big retailers continued to cut investments they had made earlier in the pandemic when shipping delays and shortages made it difficult to keep customers happy. .
“The warehousing and storage industries, winners of the pandemic era, lost 20,000 jobs during the month, likely due to the move away from the consumption of goods,” said Nick Bunker, director of economic research at Indeed, in an analysis on Friday.
The financial sector continues to collapse
Rising interest rates and growing fears of a recession have hit financial markets hard. Job seekers in the sector are not faring much better.
The financial sector added just 3,000 jobs in October, which the Labor Department does not consider a significant increase in employment. Rental and leasing services lost 8,000 jobs last month alone, likely due to a slowing housing market caused by high mortgage rates.
Real estate brokers, mortgage lenders and other businesses that depend on strong home sales have laid off employees and brace for deeper cuts as the housing market continues to slow. Higher interest rates are also suppressing investment activity, so business companies are also considering layoffs.
Mining, construction and retail trade also saw weak job growth in October.