NEWPORT BEACH, Calif., October 14, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) – Demand for temporary workers in the United States is expected to increase by 14.4% on a seasonally adjusted basis for the fourth quarter of 2021, compared to the same period in 2020, according to the Palmer Forecast ™, released today. The increase in demand mainly reflects the economic recovery after the lockdowns and business disruptions associated with the pandemic and the return of the US economy to a more normal pace.
The Palmer Forecast ™ showed a 19.0% increase in temporary help for the third quarter of 2021. Actual results as reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) were lower than expected, with an increase of 14.4%. The difference is mainly explained by higher than expected unemployment rates. Labor demand continues to be strong, with more than 10.4 million jobs open, as reported by the BLS on October 12, 2021. The Covid-19 Delta variant remains a contributing factor in limiting the return to work, as well as the federal government’s improved weekly unemployment and other related benefits enacted in early 2021, which ended in early September.
The BLS said temporary help jobs for the third quarter of 2021 were up 14.4% from the same quarter last year, but were down 5,200 jobs in September compared to August. There has been a strong rebound in temporary help jobs so far in 2021, with a total of 62,000 added since the start of the year and an average of 6,800 per month. According to the BLS, 332,000 temporary jobs were lost in 2020, the second consecutive year of decline, an average job loss of 27,750 per month. The BLS also reported that 42,000 temporary help jobs were lost in 2019, an average of 3,500 fewer jobs per month. In 2018, more than 99,000 temporary jobs were created compared to 2017, an average of 8,200 per month. In addition, 96,000 temporary jobs were created in 2017 compared to 2016, an average of 8,000 per month, against 32,000 temporary jobs added in 2016, or an average of 2,600 per month. In 2015, around 97,000 temporary jobs were created, compared to 162,000 new temporary jobs in 2014.
The Labor Department reported that non-farm payroll employment increased by 194,000 jobs in September 2021, significantly less than the consensus estimate of increases of 488,000 jobs. For the third quarter of 2021, 550,000 non-farm jobs were added on an average monthly basis. For 2020, non-farm employment is down 6.17%, or 9,372,000 jobs, compared to 2019. To put that in perspective, there were 176,000 non-farm jobs added on average per month in 2019 and 2.1 million total jobs added for the year, which is lower than the 220,000 added per month in 2018, and 2.6 million for that year. For 2017, a total of 2.1 million new jobs were created, compared to 2.2 million new jobs in 2016.
The main categories of jobs created / lost in September 2021 are as follows:
- Private sector: +265,000
- Total non-agricultural employment: +194,000
- Leisure and Hospitality: +74,000
- Professional and commercial services: +60,000
- Retail trade: +56,000
- Manufacturing: +26,000
- Construction: +22,000
- Temporary help: -5,200
- Education and health services: -18,000
- Government sector: -123,000
In September 2021, the participation rate remained unchanged at 61.6%, and it has been in a narrow range of 61.4% and 61.7% since June 2020. The U3, commonly referred to as the unemployment rate, has edged down to 4.8% in September from 5.2% in August.
As reported by the BLS, the unemployment rate for workers with college degrees fell 25 basis points in September from August, to 2.5%, and the unemployment rate for workers without a high school diploma. rose 10 basis points to 7.9%. The U6 unemployment rate, which tracks the unemployed, as well as those who are underemployed and work part-time for economic reasons, fell 30 basis points to 8.5% in September from August. The U6 rate is considered to be the rate that most broadly describes the people most affected by the latest economic downturn and measures the rate of discouraged workers.
“One of the most telling indicators to watch is the penetration rate of temporary help, because it measures temporary help as a percentage of total employment. In September 2021, the temp penetration rate was unchanged from August, at 1.83% of the total labor market. The penetration rate cycle peaked at 2.05% in December 2019 and at a low of 1.3% in June 2009, ”said Greg Palmer, Founder and Managing Director of G. Palmer & Associates, a consulting firm in Human Capital based in Orange County, Calif., specializing in workforce solutions.
“Even if the economy recovers, the biggest problem remains the number of workers re-entering the labor market, as they are able to be more selective in seeking new opportunities with a high demand for employees,” he said. added Palmer. “Recruitment companies report extreme difficulties in filling the many open positions they currently occupy. The American Staffing Association’s Endowment Index also rebounded from a low of 59.9 on May 10, 2020 to a strong close of 99 on September 19, 2021, a 26.1% increase from the same week l ‘last year and surpassing 2019 levels. All of this adds to further signs of resumption of temporary aid as the end of 2021 approaches. “
About Palmer Forecast ™
The Palmer Forecast ™ is based, in part, on the BLS and other key indicators. The model was originally developed by the A. Gary Anderson Center for Economic Research at Chapman University and serves as an indicator of economic activity. Businesses 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 & Associés
G. Palmer & Associates, founded in 2006, provides consulting services in the human capital sector. Founder Greg Palmer served on the Board of Directors of the American Staffing Association and was President and CEO 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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