U.S. added 187,000 jobs in August as market begins to cool

Dan Li |
Chief Financial Officer | Snagajob + PhD in Economics | Northwestern University

The U.S. economy added 187,000 jobs in August, up from the revised 157,000 added in July. Following revisions, job gains for the summer were 110,000 lower than originally reported in June and July, pointing to a bit of cooling in the market overall.

The unemployment rate rose 0.3% month over month to 3.8%, up from 3.7% one year ago. With 5.4 million people currently looking for work and total job openings down to 8.8 million according to the latest JOLTS report, there are still more than enough jobs for each job seeker.

The number of first time job seekers entering the market rose to 597,000 in August, up 19% month over month and 17% year over year.

After a relatively large growth in July, wage gains stabilized in August, growing just 0.2% month over month and bringing the year over year growth down to 4.3%.

While the largest monthly job gains were seen in the healthcare and leisure and hospitality industries, notable losses were seen in the transportation and warehousing industries.

On Snagajob, job postings are down 4% month over month after large gains in July, with August posting numbers 2% above the 2023 average.

Here’s your roundup of key insights from the report:

  • Reuters: “The labor market is slowing in response to the U.S. central bank's hefty rate hikes to cool demand in the economy.”

  • Wall Street Journal: “The job market remains tight enough that most employers are holding onto workers, rather than laying them off, and are paying them more.”

  • Washington Post: “Consumer spending this summer has fueled demand for businesses, pushing employers to post more job opportunities than there are unemployed workers.”

  • New York Times: “There is no sign of an imminent recession that would result in widespread joblessness, and the August gain was still significantly above the number of jobs required to absorb flow of people into the labor force.”

As the hourly expert, Snagajob is here to help with your hiring needs. Contact our team today to learn more about our solutions for enterprise, mid-size, and small businesses.

Hourly Jobs

All industry data is from 3/2/20-8/31/2023

Here are the latest overall job numbers:

Overall hourly jobs are up 69% from February 2020's pre-pandemic numbers, and they are down 4% month over month.

Here are the latest job numbers by industry and category:

Food & Restaurant jobs are down 30% compared to pre-pandemic norms, seeing a 15% month-over-month decline, and a 34% year-over-year decline.

Hotel & Hospitality jobs are down 53% compared to pre-pandemic norms, seeing a 2% month-over-month decrease, and a 52% year-over-year decline.

Healthcare jobs are up 258% compared to pre-pandemic norms, seeing a 23% month-over-month decline, and a 24% year-over-year decrease.

Retail jobs are down 48% compared to pre-pandemic norms, seeing a 14% month-over-month drop, and a 64% year-over-year decline.

Warehouse & Logistics jobs are up 64% compared to pre-pandemic norms, seeing a 31% month-over-month decline, and with a 87% year-over-year decline.