After harmful storms, U.S. economy added 261K jobs in October

Restaurant industry employment rebounded from two September hurricanes, the Labor Department's Bureau of Labor Statistics report said Friday. The 89,000 jobs created in the industry led the net gain of 261,000 jobs total. File Photo by Malcolm McClendon/Texas Military Department/UPI

Nov. 3 (UPI) — The domestic economy added more than 260,000 jobs in October — the most in a year — in spite of two particularly harmful hurricanes and slow September growth, the U.S. Labor Department said Friday.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that unemployment for the month declined to 4.1 percent — the lowest rate since 2000. Average hourly earnings, though, saw only a 0.2 percent increase.

The report indicates that any long-term effects from Hurricane Harvey in Texas and Hurricane Irma in Florida have already disappeared from the labor picture.

The department figures showed the restaurant industry, which lost 98,000 workers nationally in September, gained 89,000 in October. Manufacturing payrolls increased by 24,000 and the construction industry added 11,000.

Employers of professional and business service workers added 50,000 workers, the most since May. Another 24,000 were employed in the healthcare field. The retail industry lost 8,300 jobs.

The number of those unemployed in the United States declined to 6.5 million, the report said, noting that the unemployment percentage has declined by 0.7 percent, or 1.1 million people, since the start of 2017.

The percentage of those jobless for 27 weeks or longer was little changed, and accounted for a quarter of total unemployment, the statistics showed.

Also, the participation rate of U.S. citizens in the workforce fell slightly — from 63 percent to 62.7 percent.


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