Last Updated on August 24, 2023 by Robert C. Hoopes
Title: US Job Growth Revised Down: Labor Market Remains Strong
In a recent update, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) has revised down US job growth figures by over 300,000 jobs, according to new federal data. The downward revision affects employment gains in March 2023, reducing the number of positions by 306,000. Despite this revision, economists reassure that the labor market in America remains historically strong.
Previously reported data indicated that the average monthly job gain for the 12 months ending in March 2023 was 337,000. However, with the revised figures, the average monthly job gain stands at 312,000. Nevertheless, economists unanimously agree that there are no hidden signs of a weak labor market, and they do not foresee an impending recession.
The transportation and warehousing sector bore the brunt of the downward revisions, followed by the professional and business services sector. This adjustment, though significant, does not alter the fact that the US economy continues to exhibit steady and strong growth. Job growth may have slowed, but it has not declined, with consumer spending remaining robust.
Despite the optimistic outlook, some economists, like those at Deutsche Bank, still regard a recession as a possibility. However, they are open to revisiting their projections after the release of vital economic data. Some potential headwinds for the economy include rising delinquency rates on credit card and auto loan debt, the drawdown of excess savings, and slower job growth.
It is important to note that the Labor Department’s monthly jobs report is based on survey responses from employers and is subject to revision. The BLS conducts an annual benchmark revision of its data, which is then compared to the more accurate results obtained from the Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages (QCEW) program. The comprehensive QCEW data, including the first quarter of 2023, was also released, with the final benchmark revision slated for February 2024.
While the downward revision in job growth figures may raise some concerns, it is crucial to recognize the broader context: the labor market in America remains robust, with steady economic growth and strong consumer spending continuing to drive the economy forward.