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San Antonio, TX

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The Blackman Report: Unemployment Rate Drops to Lowest in Four Years

October 11, 2012
The Blackman Report: Unemployment Rate Drops to Lowest in Four Years

Current Labor Indicators

  • Total Unemployment: 7.8%
  • College Educated Unemployment: 4.1%
  • Total Job Loss/Gain: +114,000
  • Temporary Penetration Rate: 1.89%


The Bureau of Labor Statistics September employment report took its biggest drop since January 2009, falling from last month’s 8.1 percent to 7.8 percent. The U.S. also gained 114,000 jobs this month, roughly in line with the consensus expectations of 118,000.


In the temporary staffing sector, we saw more positive indicators in the economy with temporary jobs rising 8.2 percent year over year, seasonally adjusted. Meanwhile the temporary penetration rate – the percentage of temporary workers as a percentage of the total workforce – stayed relatively consistent at 1.898 percent.


The unemployment rate for college-degreed professionals in Kforce’s specialty areas such as technology, finance and accounting, as well as health information management remains low around four percent. In fact, the healthcare and financial services sectors added 44,000 jobs and 13,000 jobs this month, respectively. As a practical matter, in many skill niches that Kforce serves, the unemployment rate is even lower.


Cyclical Pattern of Temporary Improvement


While full-time employment is not at its pre-recession peaks, we continue to see a disproportionate amount in this cycle in the temporary sector.


October employment

Source: U.S. Department of Labor, Bloomberg LP and Wells Fargo Securities, LLC


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About the author

Michael Blackman

As Chief Corporate Development Officer, Michael Blackman, a twenty year Kforce veteran, is the primary focal point for the Firm with the Wall Street investment and financial communities. He is regularly sought out by leading economists for his perspectives on the economy and labor markets, and contributes to a number of key proprietary economic publications.


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Kforce is a professional staffing and solutions firm providing flexible and permanent placement solutions in the skill areas of technology, finance & accounting and healthcare. Kforce operates in more than 60 offices located throughout the United States and one office in the Philippines.
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