Jan-17-13 Private Sector Employment Surges by Record 30,900 Workers in December
Job Growth in 2012 Marks New Jersey’s Largest Gains in Over a Decade
Private sector employers in New Jersey have added 103,200 jobs since February 2010, the low point of private sector employment during the recession, according to the preliminary federal data, which also shows that 2012 was the state’s third consecutive year of private sector employment growth.
"With December marking the single greatest job gain since 1990, we’re seeing the state begin to recover from the blow delivered by Sandy. While we still have work to do, the sustained job growth we saw over 2012 and December’s strong showing certainly makes it clear that New Jersey is moving into 2013 on a very positive note," said Charles Steindel, Chief Economist for the New Jersey Department of Treasury.
Preliminary monthly estimates released by BLS indicate that New Jersey total nonfarm employment increased by 30,200 jobs in December, to a seasonally adjusted total of 3,922,600 as measured by the BLS through its monthly employer survey. All of the gains were recorded in the private sector (+30,900) of the state’s economy. Public sector employment fell by 700.
New Jersey’s labor participation rate also increased for a third consecutive month in December, reaching 66.2 percent, compared to the national rate of 63.6 percent.
The state’s unemployment rate edged lower in December, down by 0.1 percentage point, to 9.6 percent from a revised estimate for November of 9.7 percent. (November’s preliminary unemployment rate was initially reported to be 9.6 percent by the BLS, but was revised upward.)
Based on more complete reporting from employers, previously released November estimates were revised lower, down by 2,400 jobs, to show an over-the-month (October – November) total nonfarm employment loss of 10,500 jobs during the period super-storm Sandy devastated New Jersey. Preliminary estimates had initially indicated an over-the-month loss of 8,100 jobs.
A preliminary over-the-year analysis shows that from December 2011 – December 2012, employment in New Jersey was higher by 48,000 jobs, with the majority of the gains recorded by private sector employers (+46,100). Public sector employment was up by 1,900 over the year.
This marks the largest over-the-year private sector job gain since December 1999 – December 2000 (+64,500). Moreover, this is the third consecutive year that New Jersey recorded private sector job expansion (December 2009 – December 2010: 10,200 jobs; December 2010 – December 2011: 33,400, jobs).
In December, job gains were posted in all of the state’s nine major private industry sectors. The industry sector with the largest gain was trade, transportation and utilities, which rose by 6,000 jobs. Other sectors that experienced job growth included: education and health services (+5,600), construction (+4,300), professional and business services (+3,900), leisure and hospitality (+3,300), financial activities (+2,300), and other services (+1,400).
Over the month, public sector employment was lower by 700 mainly due to less employment at the state (-200) and local (-600) government levels. Over the month, the unadjusted workweek for production workers increased by 0.3 hours to 42.6 hours, average hourly earnings were lower by $0.14 to $18.86 and weekly earnings rose by $11.58 to $803.44. Compared to December of last year, the unadjusted workweek increased by 1.2 hours, average hourly earnings decreased by $0.83, and weekly earnings were lower by $11.73.
Press Release Tables
Technical Notes: Estimates of industry employment and unemployment levels are arrived at through the use of two different monthly surveys.
Industry employment data are derived through the Current Employment Statistics (CES) survey, a monthly survey of business establishments conducted by the BLS, an arm of the U.S. Department of Labor, which provides estimates of employment, hours, and earnings data broken down by industry for the nation as a whole, all states, and most major metropolitan areas (often referred to as the “establishment” survey).
Resident employment and unemployment data are mainly derived from the New Jersey portion of the national Current Population Survey (CPS), a household survey conducted each month by the U.S. Census Bureau under contract with BLS, which provides input to the Local Area Unemployment Statistics (LAUS) program (often referred to as the “household” survey).
Both industry and household estimates are revised each month based on additional information from updated survey reports compiled by BLS. In addition, these estimates are benchmarked (revised) annually based on actual counts from New Jersey’s Unemployment Compensation Law administrative records and other data.
This required annual review process, or benchmarking, incorporates more complete data from all New Jersey employers. The benchmarked data, which will present a more accurate picture of the New Jersey economy for the entire calendar year of 2012, will be released on March 18, 2013.