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manufacturing employment

Manufacturing Job Openings Ticked Higher in January, but Separations Were Also Up

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The Bureau of Labor Statistics said that manufacturing job openings ticked higher, up from 342,000 in December to 364,000 in January, its highest level since July’s 15-year high (394,000). Job postings rose for both durable (up from 194,000 to 207,000) and nondurable (up from 148,000 to 157,000) goods firms. This report is encouraging from an openings standpoint, as elevated levels of postings should lead to better hiring numbers down the line.

For now, however, net hiring has remained weak. Total hiring edged up from 293,000 to 294,000 for the month, its fastest pace since October 2008. An increase in hiring for nondurable goods firms (up from 122,000 to 126,000) was just enough to offset fewer hires for durable goods manufacturers (down from 171,000 to 168,000). At the same time, total separations – which include quits, layoffs and retirements – increased from 287,000 to 301,000, an 11-month high. Separations were higher for both durable (up from 163,000 to 168,000) and nondurable (up from 124,000 to 132,000) goods businesses. Read More

ADP: Fastest Monthly Manufacturing Job Growth in Nearly Five Years

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ADP said that manufacturing employment grew strongly in February, with the sector hiring 32,000 workers for the month on net. It was the third straight monthly gain in manufacturing employment and the fastest monthly pace since March 2012. This was yet another sign that we have turned a corner in the labor market, with employers accelerating their hiring in light of stronger activity and sentiment. In contrast, firms were more cautious in 2016, with 39,000 fewer workers on net last year. Hopefully, the trend of stronger job growth is one that continues in the coming months. Read More

Manufacturing Job Openings Ticked Higher in December

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The Bureau of Labor Statistics said that manufacturing job openings ticked higher, up from 314,000 in November to 325,000 in December, a three-month high. Postings in the sector have trended lower since achieving an all-time high of 397,000 in April. On the positive side, this report will hopefully begin a movement in the right direction, and more importantly, job openings remain quite elevated overall, especially relative to net hiring. In 2016, job openings averaged 341,000 per month, up from 311,000 in 2015. In the December data, both durable (up from 181,000 to 183,000) and nondurable (up from 133,000 to 141,000) goods firms had more openings. Read More

ADP: Manufacturing Hiring Picked Up in January

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ADP said that manufacturing employment growth picked up in January, with the sector hiring 15,000 workers for the month on net. It marked the fourth time in the past five months that manufacturers added workers, but firms in the sector lost 39,000 workers in 2016, according to ADP. (The Bureau of Labor Statistics has said that manufacturing employment declined by 45,000 workers last year in official data.) Manufacturers had been wary about adding to their workforces over much of the past year due to global headwinds and economic uncertainties. Hopefully, this latest release is the start of things turning around as we begin 2017 with improved signs of activity and business confidence. Indeed, job openings have remained elevated in recent months, suggesting that manufacturers are prepared to accelerate hiring and be less cautious with better demand and production figures. Read More

Net Hiring in Manufacturing Was Flat in November with Little Change in Job Openings

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The Bureau of Labor Statistics said that net hiring in the manufacturing sector was flat in November, continuing a trend of weak net job growth year-to-date. According to the latest Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS), total hiring edged up from 274,000 in October to 275,000 in November, with marginal increases for both durable (up from 159,000 to 160,000) and nondurable (up from 114,000 to 115,000) goods firms. At the same time, total separations – which include quits, layoffs and retirements – rose from 269,000 to 275,000 for the month. Overall, net hiring (or hiring minus separations) decreased from 5,000 in October to zero in November.

Meanwhile, manufacturing job openings were little changed, up from 320,000 in October to 324,000 in November. Postings in the sector have trended lower since achieving an all-time high of 397,000 in April; yet, they remain elevated, especially relative to hiring levels. Through the first 11 months of 2016, job openings have averaged 343,000 per month, up from 311,000 for 2015 as a whole. As such, we have continued to see relatively healthy gains in manufacturing job openings, despite some easing over the past few months. This gives us optimism for faster hiring growth moving forward. In the November data, nondurable goods firms had more openings, up from 123,000 to 139,000, but there were fewer postings among durable goods manufacturers, down from 197,000 to 185,000. Read More

Manufacturing Employment Rose in December, but Down 45,000 for 2016 as a Whole

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The Bureau of Labor Statistics said that manufacturing employment rose by 17,000 in December, its first monthly increase since July. That is hopefully a sign of better hiring numbers moving forward, which would be consistent with some of the improved sentiment and activity data of late. Nonetheless, it does not reverse the disappointing trend seen for 2016 as a whole, which saw manufacturing hiring down by 45,000 workers on net for the sector. Indeed, for most of last year, manufacturing leaders were quite cautious in their hiring in light of disappointing demand and production data and persistent economic uncertainties and headwinds. Read More

ADP: Manufacturing Employment Growth Continued to Disappoint in December

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ADP said that manufacturing employment growth continued to disappoint, with hiring down by 9,000 in December. For the year as a whole, employment in the sector fell by 51,000 in 2016, with manufacturers wary about adding to their workforces given ongoing global headwinds and economic uncertainties. Hopefully, that begins to turn around moving forward into 2017 with improved signs of activity seen in other measures. Indeed, job openings have remained elevated in recent months, suggesting that manufacturers are prepared to accelerate hiring and be less cautious with better demand and production figures.

Meanwhile, nonfarm payroll employment rose by 153,000 in December, weaker than the consensus estimate of around 170,000. In 2016, nonfarm payrolls increased by 174,450 per month on average, a decent pace but down from the 209,000 average per month in 2015. For the month, goods-producing employment was lower across-the-board, including mining (down 5,000) and construction (down 2,000) in addition to manufacturing. The information sector also lost workers in December, down by 6,000. The largest job gains were in trade, transportation and utilities (up 82,000), education and health services (up 29,000), professional and business services (up 24,000) and financial activities (up 10,000).

Small and medium-sized businesses (e.g., those with less than 500 employees) accounted for more than 58.2 percent of all net new workers in the month.

Tomorrow, we will get new jobs data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) for December, and the consensus estimate is also for around 170,000 new nonfarm payroll jobs for the month. Manufacturing employment is expected to remain soft, hopefully near zero or with a slight increase.

Net Hiring in Manufacturing Turned Negative Again in October

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The Bureau of Labor Statistics said that net hiring in the manufacturing sector turned negative again in October, ending four straight monthly gains. According to the latest Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS), total hiring declined from 279,000 in September to 271,000 in October. Hiring was lower for both durable (down from 163,000 to 156,000) and nondurable (down from 116,000 to 115,000) firms for the month. At the same time, total separations – which include quits, layoffs and retirements – were also reduced in October, down from 278,000 to 273,000. Overall, net hiring (or hiring minus separations) decreased from 1,000 in September to -2,000 in October, the first net decline since May.

Meanwhile, manufacturing job openings also pulled back in October, even as they remain relatively elevated in general. Job openings in the sector edged down from 328,000 to 322,000 in this report, with postings shifting lower since achieving an all-time high of 397,000 observed in April. Through the first ten months of 2016, job openings have averaged 346,000 per month, up from 311,000 for 2015 as a whole. As such, we have continued to see relatively healthy gains in manufacturing job openings, despite some easing in over the past few months. This gives us optimism for faster hiring growth moving forward. In the October data, nondurable goods firms had more openings, up from 122,000 to 132,000, but there were fewer postings among durable goods manufacturers, down from 206,000 to 190,000. Read More

ADP: Private-Sector Employment Rebounded in November, but Manufacturing Continued to Lag

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ADP said that manufacturing employment growth remained weak in November, with hiring in the sector down in nine of the 11 months so far this year. In November, there were 10,000 fewer workers on net for manufacturers, which continue to be challenged by global headwinds and economic anxieties. Overall, employment in the sector is down by 46,000 year-to-date, according to ADP. This suggests that manufacturers remain wary about adding to their workforce, particularly with sluggish growth in demand and production. Yet, job openings and sentiment surveys have been more favorable of late, which could indicate better hiring growth moving forward when manufacturers become less cautious. Read More

Manufacturing Net Employment Growth Continued to Decline in the First Quarter

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The Bureau of Labor Statistics said that net employment growth declined in the first quarter for the third straight quarter, according to the latest Business Employment Dynamics (BED) data. Note that BED data are released with a two-quarter lag, providing more detail about firm employment shifts by sector and by establishment size over time. Manufacturers had gross job gains of 377,000 in the first quarter, with 346,000 from expanding establishments and 31,000 from new establishments. At the same time, there were gross job losses of 403,000 in the quarter, with 361,000 from contracting establishments and 42,000 from closing establishments. Therefore, there was a net employment change of -26,000, falling further from the -11,000 change seen in the fourth quarter of 2015.

The BED database continues to reflect reduced start-up rates for new manufacturing establishments over the longer term. There were 4,000 new manufacturing establishments in the first quarter, its lowest level since the third quarter of 2009. This was also down from essentially 8,000 per month pace seen in 1996, or two decades ago. In addition, the rate of employees per start-up in manufacturing has also declined, down from an average of 94,000 employees from new establishments in 1996 to 19,000 in the first quarter of this year. Similar findings can be seen in other industries, with reduced entrepreneurship rates and smaller workforces per new start-up.