Preliminary estimates produced by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reveal that nonfarm employment in New Jersey increased by 9,800 in May to reach a seasonally adjusted level of 4,335,800. The private sector added 5,900 jobs for the month, while the public sector experienced an increase of 3,900. The unemployment rate increased by 0.1 percentage points to 3.6%.
Over the past five months, the labor force participation rate has experienced continuous growth, reaching its highest level since May 2013 at 65.2%. Additionally, the employment-population ratio has been on the rise, reaching its highest level since October 2008 at 62.9%.
In April, employment increased by 9,500, a downward revision of 6,300. Preliminary estimates indicated a gain of 15,800. The April unemployment rate remained at 3.5 percent.
In May, four out of nine major private industry sectors recorded job growth, including education and health services (+5,400), other services (+1,700), leisure and hospitality (+1,500), and financial activities (+600). Sectors that recorded a loss were construction (-1,300), professional and business services (-1,000), manufacturing (-700), and trade, transportation, and utilities (-300). The information sector was unchanged for May. Month-over-month, the state’s public sector recorded a gain of 4,400 jobs.
Over the past twelve months, New Jersey has added 93,600 nonfarm jobs. These gains were distributed across several industries, with seven out of nine private sector industries recorded a gain between May 2022 and May 2023. These industries are education and health services (+48,200), leisure and hospitality (+22,800), trade, transportation, and utilities (+9,800), other services (+5,600), manufacturing (+2,300), construction (+2,100), and information (+300). Losses were recorded in the professional and business services (-700) and financial activities (-400) industries. Year-over-year, the state’s public sector added 3,500 jobs.
Preliminary estimates for June will be released on July 20.
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