The May jobs release was the biggest ever at 2.5 million as the US economy starts to recover on the back of opening. Despite grim numbers that many banks expected – Wall Street estimates had been for a decline of 8.3 million and a jobless level of 19.5%, making it the worst jobs market since the Great Depression – things turned out much better. The US economy created 2.5 million jobs in May and the unemployment rate fell to 13.3%. Looking at the areas that hired the most, leisure and hospitality represented almost half the jobs gained.
The temporary and permanent damage expected now seems to be an overstatement – jobs are coming back much faster than anticipated. The May gain was by far the biggest one-month jobs surge in US history, the best since 1939. The only month in which 1 million or more jobs were created was 1983 when payrolls reached 1.1 million. “Baring a second surge of Covid-19, the overall US economy may have turned a corner,” said Tony Bedikian, head of global markets at Citizens Bank. Note that 78% of the people who were interviewed for the jobs report felt that they had lost jobs temporarily.