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February 03, 2006
Payroll Employment Edges Up

Payroll employment increased by 193,000 in January, and the unemployment rate dipped to 4.7 percent, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the U.S. Department of Labor.

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Employers added 354,000 jobs in November and 140,000 in December, according to revised figures.

Since January 2005, job gains have averaged 174,000 per month.

In January, construction employment increased by 46,000; over the year, construction employment rose by 345,000.

In the service-providing sector, employment in health care and social assistance rose by 38,000 in January. Healthcare employment increased 287,000 over the year.

Over the month, financial activities employment was up by 21,000, following little change in December.

The average workweek for production or nonsupervisory workers on private payrolls was unchanged at 33.8 hours in January, seasonally adjusted. The manufacturing workweek and factory overtime also were unchanged at 40.8 hours and 4.5 hours, respectively.

Average hourly earnings of production or nonsupervisory workers on private payrolls increased by 7 cents in January to $16.41, seasonally adjusted. Average weekly earnings increased by 0.4 percent over the month to $554.66. Over the year, average hourly earnings increased by 3.3 percent and average weekly earnings increased by 3.6 percent.

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