US manufacturers added 15,000 jobs in October as the overall jobless rate declined, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Within manufacturing, the machinery sector added 5,000 jobs, furniture and related products 4,000 and semiconductors and electronic components 2,000, the bureau said in a statement. Employment fell by 1,400 jobs in the electrical equipment and appliances sector. Manufacturers of durable goods added 14,000 jobs.
Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 214,000 jobs in October, with the unemployment rate at 5.8%, down from 5.9% the month before. Job gains occurred in food services and drinking places, retail trade and health care, the bureau said.
The unemployment rate in manufacturing was 4.3% in October. The rate for durable goods was 4.4% and 4.1% for non-durable goods. Non-durable goods include sectors such as food manufacturing, paper and paper products, chemicals and plastics.
In October 2013, the manufacturing unemployment rate was 6.2%, with 6.1% for durable goods and 6.3% for non-durable goods.
For the first 10 months of the year, manufacturing employment increased by 170,000 jobs, mostly in durable goods, the bureau said.
By Bill Koenig
Senior Editor - SME Media Group