U.S. Economy Added 280,000 Jobs in May

Posted on June 5, 2015

The U.S. economy added 280,000 in May according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). This was the biggest monthly job gain so far this year. The U.S. has now added over a million new jobs so far in 2015. The employment rate climbed to 5.5%.

Some of the biggest gains were in the professional and business services, leisure and hospitality and health care industries. Professional and business services saw an increase of 63,000 jobs in May and leisure and hospitality added 57,000 jobs. Other industries adding jobs included retail (+31,000), construction (+17,000) and transporation (+13,000).

Few industries lost jobs but one that did was mining which declined by 17,000 jobs in May. Mining has lost 68,000 jobs so far this year.

A CNN/Money report notes that there are still strong concerns about wage growth in the U.S. If job gains can be sustained then demand for workers should eventually cause wages to grow. Average hourly earnings have climbed 2.3% so far this year according to the BLS.

The 280,000 figure is bigger than the 229,000 last May. It should help relieve concerns over the small March jobs number when only 119,000 jobs were added. Aside from the March number all of the past ten months have seen at least 200,000 jobs added. We could use a couple big months of 350,000 or more to really keep things moving in the right direction.