Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 638,000 in October, and the unemployment rate declined to 6.9%, the U.S. Department of Labor reported. These improvements in the labor market reflect the continued resumption of economic activity that had been curtailed due to the COVID-19 pandemic and efforts to contain it.
Manufacturing employment rose by 38,000 in October but is 621,000 lower than in February. Gains occurred in fabricated metal products (+7,000), primary metals (+6,000), and wood products (+4,000). Employment continued to trend up in food manufacturing (+6,000) and in plastics and rubber products (+4,000).