Employment rose by 261,000 in October, and the unemployment rate edged down to 4.1%, the lowest since 2000. Employment in food services and drinking places increased sharply, mostly offsetting a decline in September that largely reflected the impact of Hurricanes Irma and Harvey. In October, job gains also occurred in professional and business services, manufacturing and health care.
Manufacturing employment rose by 24,000 in October, with job gains in computer and electronic products (+5,000) and chemicals (+4,000). Employment in fabricated metals continued to trend up (+4,000). Manufacturing has added 156,000 jobs since a recent employment low in November 2016.