US manufacturing added 31,000 jobs in November, with durable goods accounting for the bulk of the gain.
Makers of durable goods increased employment by 27,000 jobs last month, according to a breakdown by industry sector released today by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.
That continued a pattern that has run through 2017. However, two industries posted notably higher job gains than others. Machinery added 8300 jobs while fabricated metal parts employment increased by 7400 jobs.
For much of the past two years, automotive and aerospace were the consistent job performers within manufacturing. Other sectors were more erratic. In November, though, job increases were widespread among manufacturing categories.
Among the sectors increasing jobs: computer and electronic products (up 3800 jobs), miscellaneous manufacturing (up 2400) and transportation equipment (up 2600). The latter category was powered primarily by motorized vehicles and parts, which accounted for a gain of 1700 jobs. Meanwhile, furniture lost 900 jobs and wood products fell 700.
Manufacturing totaled 12.514 million jobs on a seasonally adjusted basis in November. That’s up from an adjusted 12.483 million in October. It’s also an increase of 189,000 jobs from the 12.325 million in November 2016, which bureau described last month and again today as a “recent low.”
Unemployment Rate Unchanged
The US unemployment rate remained at a 17-year-low of 4.1%, the bureau said.
Manufacturing jobs peaked in June 1979 (19.6 million on a seasonally adjusted basis, 19.7 million unadjusted). That sank to a low of 11.45 million adjusted and 11.34 million unadjusted in February 2010 following a severe recession caused by the 2008 financial crisis.
Since that low, new manufacturing jobs have been created requiring increased skills because of increased automation and technology in factories.