Hickey Jobs Report Update – September 2021

Hickey Jobs Report Update – U.S. adds 194,000 jobs as unemployment drops to 4.8% in September 2021.

U.S. economy adds 194,000 jobs and unemployment drops by only .4%, according to the latest U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Jobs Report.

This month’s release of the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics September 2021 Employment Situation Summary, often referred to as the Jobs Report, shows new job gains trickled in, but nowhere near the level of economic recovery hoped for with enhanced unemployment benefits ending, higher vaccination rates, and the holiday season about to begin.

While unemployment decreased twice as much as the prior month (-.2 to -.4), the gains are not enough to make significant impact for getting the nation back to pre-pandemic levels of 3.5% unemployment.


Key Industries

Leisure and Hospitality

The industry is still down by 9.3% or 1.6 million jobs from February 2020. September saw an addition of 74k jobs, most of which (+43k) were in arts, entertainment, and recreation. Large jumps in job additions haven’t been realized since July.


The education sector is still down by 676k jobs from February 2020. A loss of 164k jobs occurred this past month as getting back-to-school continue to be a great challenge. Due to an evolving format being used by educators, it is hard to analyze these numbers for a clear picture of how the industry is performing.

Professional and Business Services

While still 385k lower than February 2020 levels, the sector added 60k jobs in September. The areas which gained the most improvement were architecture and engineering (+15k) and management and technical consulting services (+15k).


Manufacturing saw 26k jobs added in September but were partially offset by a loss of 6k in the auto industry, as the semiconductor shortage still hampers automakers. The sector is still down by 353k jobs since February 2020.

Transportation and Warehousing

This sector continues to grow at a steady rate by adding 47k jobs in September. While the global supply chain is still in disarray, the industry is 72k jobs over pre-pandemic levels. Further highlighting the need for workers within transportation and warehousing roles.

Retail Trade

After two months of nominal growth, the retail industry started to gain back some of the jobs lost during the pandemic by adding 56k positions overall. Food and beverage took a slight hit (-12k), but retail and clothing accessories gained 27k jobs as we close in on the holiday season.

Other Industries

Among other industries across the U.S. economy, the following employment numbers were released in the latest report:

  • Healthcare: -18k
  • Financial: Little Change
  • Construction: +22k
  • Wholesale Trade: +17k
  • Information: +32k
  • Mining: +5k

For more information on the latest Jobs Report, including additional details on the data concepts and statistical methodologies utilized, visit the Bureau of Labor Statistics Employment Situation Summary website.