The BLS employment data for May is out and it is very disappointing. Nonfarm payrolls were up by only 69,000 and the unemployment rate increased slightly to 8.2%. As the BLS noted "Employment increased in health care, transportation and warehousing, and wholesale trade but declined in construction. Employment was little changed in most other major industries." Cuts in government jobs continue to drag down the jobs numbers. There were 13,000 government jobs cut in May while private sector payrolls grew by 82,000.
On another disappointing note, the number of involuntary underemployed once again increased. The number of workers who could only find part time work rose by over 290,000. The number of involuntary underemployed had declined through the beginning of the year, but has risen now for three straight months. This may be a worrisome indicator that companies continue to be reluctant to hire full time workers. However, the number of individuals working part time because of slack work actually decreased slightly.