The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that U.S. employers across various industries expanded payrolls by 428,000 jobs last month, exceeding analysts’ expectations of about 400,000 jobs.

The latest jobs report from the BLS also notes, however, that new job creation in February and March was lower than previously reported — by a total of 39,000 positions. With these adjustments, the U.S. economy has seen employment rise by nearly 1.7 million jobs since the beginning of 2022.

Education and health services and manufacturing sectors see notable gains

The leisure and hospitality industry added 78,000 jobs last month as it continued its rebound from COVID-19 pandemic-related job losses and business disruption. The BLS reports employment in education and health services also increased last month, with employers in that sector adding 59,000 jobs. The manufacturing industry saw solid job growth in April as well, with the addition of 55,000 jobs.

These industries also saw significant job gains in April, according to the BLS:

  • Transportation and warehousing: 52,000 jobs added
  • Professional and business services: 41,000 jobs added
  • Financial activities: 35,000 jobs added
  • Retail trade: 29,200 jobs added
  • Wholesale trade: 22,200 jobs added
  • Government: 22,000 jobs added

National unemployment rate sits at a 54-year low

The unemployment rate in April was 3.6% — unchanged from March and a 54-year low.

The unemployment rate for college-degreed workers who are 25 or older also held steady from the previous month at 2.0%. These workers are in the highest demand by employers.

Many in-demand roles have even lower unemployment rates, other BLS data show. Examples include accountants and auditors (1.8%), attorneys (0.8%), advertising managers (0.5%), and network and computer systems administrators (0.1%).*

To view unemployment rates for other top roles, see the Demand for Skilled Talent Report from Robert Half.

Number of employed persons working remotely drops to 7.7%

The BLS reports that 7.7% of employed persons teleworked in April due to the COVID-19 pandemic, down from 10% in March. The BLS describes these workers as employed persons who worked away from the office for pay at some point in the last four weeks specifically because of the pandemic.

Number of people unable to work due to pandemic falls to 1.7 million

Household survey supplemental data from the BLS also finds that the number of people unable to work at all, or who worked fewer hours at some point in the four weeks preceding the latest survey due to the pandemic, was 1.7 million. That figure was 2.5 million in March.

Stay informed about the latest hiring trends

The Demand for Skilled Talent report from Robert Half provides current data on U.S. hiring trends and top positions for several key industries at a glance. Our latest edition includes insights on employers’ return-to-the-office plans, the top reasons many workers are planning to launch a job search soon and salary negotiation tips for candidates.

View the full report on the Robert Half website.

*Current Population Statistics, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Jan. 7, 2022. Percentages reflect unemployment rates for select positions that were near or below the national unemployment rate at the end of Q4 2021.