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Economy Adds 1.4m Jobs as Unemployment Rate Drops to 8.4%

The economy added 1.4 million in August, as the unemployment rate fell to 8.4 percent,…

  • September 8, 2020

The economy added 1.4 million in August, as the unemployment rate fell to 8.4 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports.

This is down from 1.8 million jobs added in July, 4.8 added in June and 2.7 million added in May. So far, around half of the 22 million jobs lost in the early in the COVID-19 pandemic have been regained.

According to the Labor Department, there was an increase in government employment in August largely due temporary hiring for the 2020 Census.

Notable job gains also occurred in retail trade, in professional and business services, in leisure and hospitality, and in education and health services.

Among the unemployed, the number of persons on temporary layoff decreased by 3.1 million in August to 6.2 million, down considerably from the series high of 18.1 million in April.

In August, the number of permanent job losers increased by 534,000 to 3.4 million; this measure has risen by 2.1 million since February.

The number of unemployed reentrants to the labor force declined by 263,000 to 2.1 million. (Reentrants are persons who previously worked but were not in the labor force prior to beginning their job search.)

The number of unemployed persons who were jobless less than 5 weeks decreased by 921,000 to 2.3 million in August, and the number of persons jobless 5 to 14 weeks fell by 2.0 million to 3.1 million.

The long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks or more) numbered 1.6 million, little changed over the month.