Mike Shedlock

Initial Reaction

This month sported another amazing difference between the household survey and the payroll survey. The difference is so vast that looking at the numbers in isolation, one might think the results were from two different countries.

The headline number from the payroll survey beat expectations by a mile with 288,000 jobs, but beneath the surface, the household survey shows employment declined by 73,000.

April BLS Jobs Statistics at a Glance

  • Nonfarm Payroll: +288,000 - Establishment Survey
  • Employment: -73,000 - Household Survey
  • Unemployment: -733,000 - Household Survey
  • Involuntary Part-Time Work: +54,000 - Household Survey
  • Voluntary Part-Time Work: -330,000 - Household Survey
  • Baseline Unemployment Rate: -0.4 at 6.3% - Household Survey
  • U-6 unemployment: -0.4 to 12.3% - Household Survey
  • Civilian Non-institutional Population: +181,000
  • Civilian Labor Force: -806,000 - Household Survey
  • Not in Labor Force: +988,000 - Household Survey
  • Participation Rate: +0.2 at 62.8 - Household Survey


Additional Notes About the Unemployment Rate

  • The unemployment rate varies in accordance with the Household Survey, not the reported headline jobs number, and not in accordance with the weekly claims data.
  • In the past year the population rose by 2,260,000.
  • In the last year the labor force rose by 62,000.
  • In the last year, those "not" in the labor force rose by 2,203,000
  • Over the course of the last year, the number of people employed rose by 1,993,000 (an average of 166,000 a month)

Mike Shedlock

Mike Shedlock is a registered investment advisor representative for Sitka Pacific Capital Management.