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NEWPORT BEACH, Calif., Oct. 15, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Demand for temporary workers in the United States is expected to increase 0.8% on a seasonally adjusted basis for the 2019 fourth quarter, when compared with the same period in 2018, according to the Palmer Forecast™, released today.
According to Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), results for temporary help for the 2019 third quarter increased 0.6%, same as the Palmer Forecast™ indicated. There were 10,200 temp jobs added in September.
“Although the 2019 third quarter marked the 39th consecutive quarter of year-over-year increases in demand for temporary workers, our forecast for the 2019 fourth quarter predicts a similar slower rate of growth ahead,” said Greg Palmer, founder and managing director of G. Palmer & Associates, an Orange County, California-based human capital advisory firm that specializes in workforce solutions. “Despite currently mixed economic signals, the directional trend remains slightly upward as we move into the fourth quarter.”
According to the BLS, 16,000 temp help jobs were lost so far in 2019, an average of 1,700 fewer jobs per month. In 2018, more than 99,000 temp help jobs were added, an average of 8,200 per month. Additionally, 96,000 temp jobs were added in 2017, an average of 8,000 per month, versus 32,000 temp jobs added in 2016, an average of 2,600 per month. In 2015, approximately 97,000 temporary jobs were added, compared with 162,000 new temp jobs in 2014, 139,000 in 2013, and 142,000 additional temp jobs in 2012.
The Labor Department reported an additional 136,000 seasonally adjusted non-farm jobs in September, a growth rate of 1.4%, which was below consensus expectations of 145,000. There were 220,000 new jobs added per month in 2018, and 2.6 million total for the year. For 2017, a total of 2.1 million new jobs were created, versus 2.2 million new jobs in 2016.
The key job categories of jobs growth are as follows:
In September 2019, the participation rate was unchanged from August at 62.9%. The U3 unemployment rate, generally reported as the official unemployment rate, decreased 20 bps to 3.7% the lowest rate since 1969. As reported by the BLS, the rate of unemployment for workers with college degrees ticked down 10bps in September from August, to 2.0%, and the unemployment rate for workers with less than a high school education ticked down 60 bps to 4.8%. The U6 unemployment rate, which tracks those who are unemployed, as well as those who are underemployed and are working part-time for economic reasons, was down 30bps from August, to 6.9% in September. The U6 rate is considered the rate that most broadly depicts those most affected by the last economic downturn and measures the rate of discouraged workers.
“One of the most revealing indicators to watch, is the temp help penetration rate, because it measures temp help as a percentage of total employment. In September 2019, the penetration rate remained unchanged at 2.0% of the total labor market, versus a low of 1.3% in June 2009,” Palmer said.
The next few quarters…
The temp help employment market continues to show minimum growth, primarily due to relatively anemic GDP growth, as well as domestic and worldwide economic uncertainty. Concerns regarding trade relations with China and others, as well as political uncertainty in the U.S., Europe, and other parts of the world, are causing the economy to sputter. With the consensus GDP forecast for the remainder of 2019 expected to be slightly above 2.0%, moderate growth is still anticipated to continue at least through the balance of 2019.
he Palmer Forecast™
The Palmer Forecast™ is based, in part, on BLS and other key indicators. The model was initially developed by the A. Gary Anderson Center for Economic Research at Chapman University and serves as an indicator of economic activity. Companies that employ temporary staff use the forecast as a guide to navigate through fluctuating economic conditions in managing their workforce to meet business demands.
About G. Palmer & Associates
G. Palmer & Associates, founded in 2006, provides advisory services in the human capital sector. Founder Greg Palmer has served on the board of the American Staffing Association and was president and chief executive officer of RemedyTemp, Inc., one of the nation’s largest temporary staffing companies, prior to its sale in June 2006. For more information, visit www.GPalmerandAssociates.com.
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