GSI Analysis: September ’19 Jobs Report – Amid Consistent US Job Growth, NJ Lags As Unemployment Improves Slightly

  • State net loss of 200 jobs, private sector gained 900 jobs, public sector sheds 1,100

  • Unemployment Rate decreases .01% to 3.2%

  • Labor Force Participation Rate declines by .03% to 63.4, just ahead of US rate of 63.2%

  • Workforce grows by 19,000 but remains smaller than average labor force in 2008

According to Garden State Initiative (GSI) analysis of the newest jobs numbers issued by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, New Jersey’s employment picture was essentially flat in September as the state lost 200 jobs, the private sector added 900 positions while the public sector shed 1,100 positions.  The numbers stand in contrast to the overall U.S. economy which added 135,000 new jobs in September. The state’s unemployment rate edged lower by .01% to 3.2%. The numbers indicated an increase in the state’s workforce size but a decline in the labor participation rate.

“This month’s jobs report was a mixed bag for the state’s economy,” stated GSI’s president Regina M. Egea. “The strong increase in the size of the state’s workforce was a positive development, however a decline in the workforce participation rate and stagnant job growth while the U.S. continues to grow, shows an economy that lacks vibrancy. Of particular note, was the significant job losses in the Professional and Business Sector. That will bear monitoring in the months ahead.”

 New Jersey’s workforce increased by 19,000 individuals in September but remains 28,500 below the pre-Great Recession average of 4,504,400 in 2008. The state’s Labor Force Participation Rate declined by .03% to 63.4% and stands slightly ahead of the U.S. rate of 63.2%.

While New Jersey continues to lead the U.S. year over year in job losses in the Financial Activities sector, employment increases were recorded in five out of nine major private industry sectors. Of note, the Professional and Business Services Sector shedding a net of 4,100 jobs in the month. Within that sector Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services declined by 6,100 jobs.