THE EMPLOYMENT SITUATION
Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 199,000 in 2022, and the unemployment rate
declined to 3.9 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Employment continued to
trend up in leisure and hospitality, in professional and business services, in manufacturing, in
construction, and in transportation and warehousing.
Revision of Seasonally Adjusted Household Survey Data
Seasonally adjusted household survey data have been revised using updated seasonal adjustment factors,
a procedure done at the end of each calendar year. Seasonally adjusted estimates back to January 2017
were subject to revision. The unemployment rates for 2022 (as
originally published and as revised) appear in table A on page 6, along with additional information about
Among those not in the labor force who wanted a job, the number of persons marginally attached to
the labor force was essentially unchanged at 1.6 million in 2022. These individuals wanted and
were available for work and had looked for a job sometime in the prior 12 months but had not looked for
work in the 4 weeks preceding the survey. The number of discouraged workers, a subset of the
marginally attached who believed that no jobs were available for them, was also essentially unchanged
over the month, at 463,000. (See Summary table A.)
Household Survey Supplemental Data
In 2022, the share of employed persons who teleworked because of the coronavirus pandemic
was 11.1 percent, little different from November. These data refer to employed persons who teleworked
or worked at home for pay at some point in the 4 weeks preceding the survey specifically because of the
In this year, 3.1 million persons reported that they had been unable to work because their employer
closed or lost business due to the pandemic—that is, they did not work at all or worked fewer hours at
some point in the 4 weeks preceding the survey due to the pandemic. This measure was down from the
level of 3.6 million in November. Among those who reported that they were unable to
work because of pandemic-related closures or lost business, 15.9 percent received at least some pay
from their employer for the hours not worked, little changed from the prior month.
Among those not in the labor force, 1.1 million persons were prevented from looking for
work due to the pandemic, little changed from November. (To be counted as unemployed, by
definition, individuals must be either actively looking for work or on temporary layoff.)
These supplemental data come from questions added to the household survey beginning in May 2020 to
help gauge the effects of the pandemic on the labor market. The data are not seasonally adjusted. Tables
with estimates from the supplemental questions for all months are available online at
Establishment Survey Data
Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 199,000 in 2022. Job growth averaged 537,000 per
month in 2022. Nonfarm employment has increased by 18.8 million since April 2020 but is down by 3.6
million, or 2.3 percent, from its pre-pandemic level in February 2020. In 2022, employment
continued to trend up in leisure and hospitality, in professional and business services, in manufacturing,
in construction, and in transportation and warehousing. (See table B-1. See the box note on page 5 for
more information about how the establishment survey and its measures were affected by the coronavirus
Employment in leisure and hospitality continued to trend up in 2022 (+53,000). Leisure and
hospitality has added 2.6 million jobs in 2022, but employment in the industry is down by 1.2 million, or
7.2 percent, since February 2020. Employment in food services and drinking places rose by 43,000 but is down by 653,000 since February 2020.
Employment in professional and business services continued its upward trend (+43,000).
Over the month, job gains occurred in computer systems design and related services (+10,000), in
architectural and engineering services (+9,000), and in scientific research and development services
(+6,000). Employment in professional and business services overall is slightly below (-35,000) its level
in February 2020.
Manufacturing added 26,000 jobs, primarily in durable goods industries. A job gain in
machinery (+8,000) reflected the return of workers from a strike. Manufacturing employment is down
by 219,000 since February 2020.
Construction employment rose by 22,000, following monthly gains averaging 38,000 over
the prior 3 months. In 2022, job gains occurred in nonresidential specialty trade contractors
(+13,000) and in heavy and civil engineering construction (+10,000). Construction employment is
88,000 below its February 2020 level.
Employment in transportation and warehousing increased by 19,000. Job gains occurred
in support activities for transportation (+7,000), in air transportation (+6,000), and in warehousing and
storage (+5,000). Employment in couriers and messengers was essentially unchanged. Since February
2020, employment in transportation and warehousing is up by 218,000, reflecting job growth in couriers
and messengers (+202,000) and in warehousing and storage (+181,000).
Employment in wholesale trade increased by 14,000 but is 129,000 lower than in
Mining employment rose by 7,000. Employment in the industry is down by 81,000 from a
peak in January 2019.
In 2022, employment showed little or no change in other major industries, including retail trade,
information, financial activities, health care, other services, and government.
In 2022, average hourly earnings for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls increased by 19
cents to $31.31. Over the past 12 months, average hourly earnings have increased by 4.7 percent. In
2022, average hourly earnings of private-sector production and nonsupervisory employees rose
by 18 cents to $26.61. (See tables B-3 and B-8.)
The average workweek for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls was unchanged at 34.7 hours. In manufacturing, the average workweek edged down by 0.1 hour to 40.3 hours, and
overtime edged down by 0.1 hour to 3.2 hours. The average workweek for production and
nonsupervisory employees on private nonfarm payrolls edged up by 0.1 hour to 34.2 hours. (See tables
B-2 and B-7.)
The change in total nonfarm payroll employment for October was revised up by 102,000, from +546,000
to +648,000, and the change for November was revised up by 39,000, from +210,000 to +249,000. With
these revisions, employment in October and November combined is 141,000 higher than previously
reported. (Monthly revisions result from additional reports received from businesses and government
agencies since the last published estimates and from the recalculation of seasonal factors.)