October’s job creation was strong in almost every sector, as hiring across industries ranging from restaurants to automobile parts manufacturers helped the broader U.S. economy rebound from a late-summer lull.
Robust hiring at eating and drinking establishments again helped the leisure and hospitality sector lead the month’s employment figures. Employers added nearly 120,000 cooks, waitstaff and other restaurant workers to help push the entire leisure sector up 164,000 for the month.
Employment in the leisure and hospitality sector has risen by 2.4 million in 2021, though it’s still down 1.4 million, or 8.2%, since February 2020.
The wide-ranging professional and business services sector also posted some of the healthiest hiring figures in October 2021. Employers added 100,000 positions in that industry as management and technical consulting firms added nearly 14,000 jobs, scientific research and development added about 6,000, and legal services rose close to 5,000.
The headline numbers from the October jobs report showed the U.S. economy added 531,000 jobs last month, beating the Dow Jones estimate for 450,000. The unemployment rate fell to 4.6%, though many economists attribute the lower figure to fewer workers seeking jobs in the post Covid-19 era.
“Notable increases came from goods-producing industries like construction and manufacturing, a sign that the recovery is permeating industries beyond the work-from-home segments of the economy,” Peter Essele, vice president of investment management and research at Commonwealth, said in an emailed statement.
“Transportation and trade also experienced strong gains, which could help supply-chain bottlenecks ahead of the holiday shopping season,” he added. “All in all, the jobs numbers should be seen as a possible development, particularly as the economy continues to wean itself off fiscal and monetary stimulus.”
As strong as the hiring in the services sector was, the goods-producing side of the U.S. also posted a strong month. Wall Street has kept a close eye on construction and manufacturing industries for any signs of hiring that could ease supply-chain disruptions just before year’s end.
Manufacturers, which added 60,000 jobs last month, got a boost from transportation equipment makers. Companies that produce motor vehicles, motor vehicle bodies and trailers and motor vehicle parts tacked on 27,700 jobs.
The construction industry welcomed 44,000 workers in October, thanks to hiring of nonresidential specialty trade contractors. Heavy and civil engineering construction rose by 12,100.
Transportation and warehousing, a critical component of the U.S. supply chain, added a hearty 54,400 workers. Air transportation increased by 9,200, transit and ground passenger transportation rose by 15,800 and warehousing climbed by 20,200.
The public sector was the biggest laggard on the month as government payrolls declined by a net 73,000. Decreases in state and local education made up the vast majority of those losses, down 21,500 and 43,400, respectively.
— CNBC’s Nate Rattner contributed reporting.
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