The US Bureau of Labor Statistics publishes job growth by year as part of its Employment Situation Summary. This is the total number of new jobs created during a single year. Self-employed jobs are excluded from this number. 

It is every economy’s goal for job growth numbers to be as high as possible. Overall, this number indicates economic growth and a stronger job market. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, if this figure is over 100,000, it has an extremely positive and continual impact on economic growth. 

Job growth statistics are calculated by Total Nonfarm Payrolls, which are most often used. It is the total number of people in one country that are being paid for work, excluding farming.

Job Growth Facts & Stats - 2020

  • 136,000 new jobs in September 2019
  • 2.7 million new jobs in 2018
  • 135,000 new jobs in the private sector in September 2019
  • 3.5% unemployment rate for September 2019, the lowest since December 1969
  • 8.9 million jobs created by President Obama by the end of 2016
  • The total job growth is 2.153 million jobs in 2017 under Trump
  • 3.7% is the current unemployment rate, lowest in more than 50 years

1. 161,000 monthly average of new jobs in 2019.

According to the monthly job growth chart by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, job growth has averaged 161,000 per month in 2019, which is significantly less than 223,000 in 2018. Despite this, health care, along with professional and business services continue trending. In September 2019, 39,000 more jobs were being created in the health care sector, which is the monthly average in 2019. 

2. 136,000 new jobs in September 2019.

Job growth statistics show that 136,000 new jobs were created in September 2019. After revision, job growth for August 2019 was 168,000, which is 38,000 more than in the original report. It is still a big difference compared to January 2019 with 312,000 new jobs. A negative record for this year was February with only 56,000 new jobs. If we look at the data on a yearly average, the job growth indicates a relatively stable economy, as well as a relatively stable job market. 

3. 39,000 new jobs in healthcare in September 2019.

If we focus more on job growth through various industries in the US, in September 2019, as previously mentioned, 39,000 new jobs were created in the health care sector, bringing the total to 423,000 new jobs in 2019. Professional and business services had created 34,000 new jobs in 2019, which is lower than the average for 2018 of 47,000 new jobs per month. The government sector had created another 22,000 new jobs, bringing the yearly total to 147,000. Likewise, in the transportation and warehousing business, the number of new jobs has increased by 16,000, whereas the leisure and hospitality industry created an additional 21,000 new jobs, which is similar to the 2018 average, despite the job growth rates dropping with each quarter in 2019.

4. 11,000 fewer jobs in retail trade in September 2019.

According to the job growth by month stats for 2019, retail trade had 11,000 fewer jobs in September, which brings the yearly total to 78,000 fewer jobs. In September, there was an increase in 9,000 new jobs in the food and beverage industry, as well as 14,000 fewer jobs in the clothing and clothing accessories department.

5. 2.7 million new jobs in 2018.

Last year, according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2.7 million new jobs were created in 2018, with 223,000 new jobs being created on average. Meaning, there are, on average, 62,000 fewer jobs per month than how many jobs were created per month in 2018. This monthly job growth average is bigger than the one in 2017 when 179,000 new jobs were being created each month — as well as in 2016 when there was an average of 193,000 new jobs per month — but slightly less than the one in 2015 with 227,000 new jobs per month. However, there is a chance that by the end of the year this gap could get a bit smaller. 

6. 330,000 new jobs in February 2018.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics report for job growth by month in 2018, February was the month with the biggest job growth with 330,000 new jobs, followed by August with 282,000 new jobs. The smallest job growth was noted in September with just 108,000 new jobs, along with January with only 171,000 new jobs. Now, despite these figures being larger than the current year, the job market is close to full employment. Hence, the decrease in the number of new jobs is somewhat to be expected.

7. 154,000 new jobs in professional and business services in 2018.

Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics job growth chart also shows that, in 2018, the biggest job growth was seen in the professional and business services industry with 561,000 new jobs being created last year. The education and health services sector added another 350,000 new jobs; a rising trend in 2019 that is expected to continue its ongoing momentum by the end of 2020. The construction and the leisure and hospitality business also experienced employment growth. Basically, almost every major industry had seen job growth in 2018, similarly to 2017. 

8. 264,000 new jobs in the manufacturing industry in 2018.

According to US job growth data for 2018, the manufacturing sector added another 264,000 new jobs in 2018; a significant increase compared to 2017 that added only 190,000 new jobs. Likewise, last year’s numbers are also greater than the current year where the number of available jobs is on the decline. Job growth in the retail department in 2018 was practically non-existent. Nevertheless, this is still good news since retail had lost around 88,000 jobs in 2017, due to a surge in eCommerce. It is interesting to note that in 2018 retail had the most erratic changes in the number of new jobs being created on a monthly basis compared to other industries.

9. 11.7 million jobs created since May 2014.

If we look at how many jobs were created in 2018, we will notice that there is a steady increase in job growth since May 2014. During this period, over 11.7 million jobs were being added to the jobs market. The longest streak lasted for nearly 4 years, which is almost double the current one, and during that period some 22.7 million jobs were created. 

If we recall, 2018 had its fair share of economic tribulations. There were catastrophic wildfires, two major hurricanes, an extremely tight labor market, and a turbulent trade environment; especially the trade relations with China. Taking all of this into consideration, job growth in 2018 was pretty good. 

Apart from the public sector, we have the private sector which encompasses businesses oriented for-profit that are not operated or owned by the government. The third branch is the voluntary sector consisting of nonprofit organizations and charities. In a free market (capitalist) society, the private sector often makes up a large portion of the economy.

10. 126,616 new jobs in the private sector in 2018.

The number of jobs in the private sector has been on a steady increase ever since the 1940s. According to statistics regarding private-sector job creation by year, in 2018 126,616 new jobs were created in the private sector; a slight increase from the 124,259 new jobs that were created back in 2017. 

11. 100,000+ new jobs in the private sector annually since 1995.

As we previously mentioned, the rise is stable and continuous, adding more than 100,000 jobs per year since 1995. A decrease in the number of new jobs can be found only during economic recessions; usually lasting as long as the recession itself. 

12. 135,000 new jobs in the private sector in September 2019.

According to data regarding US job growth in the private sector by month (graph), 135,000 new jobs were created in September 2019, following the slowing tempo of hiring which coincides with the broader economy. Small businesses created 30,000 new jobs; mid-sized firms had created 39,000 new jobs; lastly, big companies added another 67,000 jobs to the list. As you can see, small businesses were extremely cautious with new job openings; partially because they lacked trust in the stability of the current economy. 

The US government takes a huge interest in these job creation statistics, which are used to gain a better understanding of the current employment climate and help plan actions for increasing the number of employed people, as well as lowering the unemployment rate. 

Additionally, the unemployment rate represents the percentage of people in the total labor force that are currently unemployed; in other words, these individuals are currently not working, even though they are able and willing to do so. 

13. 128.57 million people employed in 2018.

If we take a look at the employment numbers by year, around 128.57 million people were employed in the US in 2018; compared to 125.97 million in 2017. This figure has been on a continuous rise since 2009 when the country was still battling the global economic crisis. 

14. 158.27 million people employed in September 2019.

According to the data from 2019, 158.27 million people were employed in the US in September. The number increased steadily since April when there was a slight decrease in the number of employed individuals. 

15. 3.9% was the unemployment rate in 2018.

Another incredibly useful statistic is the unemployment rate by year. According to the data, the unemployment rate for 2018 was sitting at around 3.9%, following a slow and steady drop since the great economic crisis of 2009. Historically speaking, the record unemployment rate was recorded back in 1933 when it was a staggering 24.9%, significantly affecting the decade average — which was constantly above 14% in the ‘30s. 

16. 2009 was the last year with a two-digit unemployment rate.

The year 1982 was the last recorded year that had a single-digit unemployment rate and until 2009 the unemployment rate was above 10%. The lowest ever unemployment rate was back in 1944 when it was only 1.2%. 

17. 3.5% unemployment rate for September 2019, the lowest since December 1969.

According to the monthly unemployment rate statistics for 2019, the unemployment rate in September was 3.5% which is the lowest rate since December 1969. There had been a steady trend of decline throughout the whole year, following the unemployment rate of 4.0% in January 2019. It seems like the country is well on its way to accomplish full employment, with some people arguing that full employment has practically already been achieved and that the currently unemployed people are just the ones going in between jobs.

18. 6.9% of discouraged workers and the underemployed in September 2019.

If we look at job growth statistics in 2019 more closely, we will notice that there are also discouraged workers and the underemployed. In fact, there are around 6.9% of them, which is 0.3% lower than last year. This might not seem much (at first glance), but it’s the lowest rate in almost 19 years, being just 0.1% shy of the all-time record low.

One of the biggest factors for voters is the ability of the President of the United States to create jobs. The number of jobs created is often used as an argument in political debates and campaigns, or to describe the economic legacy of one of the Presidents. Judging a presidential term often boils down to which president created the most jobs. 

19. A record 12,296 new jobs during Clinton’s administration from 1993–1997.

According to stats from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in a single 4-year term, 12,296 new jobs were created during Clinton’s administration from 1993–1997, with an average annual increase of 2.85%. Surprisingly, Bill Clinton’s administration from 1997–2001 takes second place with 11,324 new jobs and an average increase of 2.33%. Besides these two terms, only Reagan’s term in office (1985–1989), Carter’s term (1977–1981), and Obama’s term (2013–2017) saw more than 10,000 new jobs being created, according to annual job growth statistics by presidential term. 

20. 6,400 fewer jobs during Hoover’s administration (1929–1933), the only presidential term with job losses in history.

There was only one presidential term with a negative number of jobs created — Herbert Hoover’s term (1929–1933) with a loss of some 6,400 jobs and an average annual decrease of 5.41%. However, upon closer inspection, we will notice that this was the time of the Great Depression, so the decreased number of jobs shouldn’t come as a surprise.

21. 5% was the annual average increase in jobs created during Roosevelt’s term in office (1941–1945); an unreachable mark ever since.

On the other hand, if we look at job creation by year stats during presidential terms, the biggest average annual increase was during Franklin Roosevelt’s term in office (1941–1945), a staggering 5%; a number never to be achieved again. Those were the years of WW2 — the period with the highest employment rate in US history. As a result, there was a great need for an industry that could supply the army with the necessary weapons and resources. Another one of Roosevelt’s terms — this time the one from 1933–1937 — takes second place, with an average annual increase of 4.97%; these were the times of the New Deal.

So, the answer to the question “which president created the most jobs” is Clinton — if we look at the total number of jobs created — and Roosevelt in regards to the largest average annual increase.

22. 8.9 million jobs created by President Obama by the end of 2016.

As previously stated, the current economic climate, huge world events, and natural catastrophes can drastically influence the number of jobs created during a presidential term. So, for example, by the end of December 2016, 8.9 million jobs were created by President Obama, which is a 6.2% increase. These Obama job creation stats are good since 152.3 million people were employed by the end of his term, compared to 143.4 million employed by the end of the Bush administration. 

23. 8.5 million jobs lost as a consequence of the 2008 economic crisis.

Still, if we take into consideration that the US economy lost around 8.5 million jobs as a result of the 2008 economic crisis — and that the number continued to drop until the end of 2009 — President Obama is the third-biggest job creator in terms of the total number of people employed; seeing how he created some 16 million jobs, which is an 11.6% increase.

24. 153.34 million employed by the end of Obama’s second term.

Shifting our focus to job growth statistics by year during Obama’s terms, we can see that there is a continual growth of the total number of employed people every year during Obama’s two terms. The number of employed individuals in 2010 — after the economic crisis was over — was 139.08 million, and at the end of Obama’s second term in 2017, 153.34 million people were employed. 

25. 534,000 new jobs in May 2010; biggest monthly increase during Obama’s term as president.

In May 2010 — during Obama’s first term as president — we saw the largest increase in the total number of people employed with 534,000 new jobs being created, according to monthly employment growth statistics. After the 2008 economic crisis, this month marked the biggest step forward in overcoming the new economic challenges and stabilizing the US economy. This was accomplished even though June of 2010 saw the biggest decrease in the total number of employed people, losing some 136,000 new jobs. Consequently, it was encouraging to see that the number of employed continued to rise almost every month.

26. On average, 42,000 fewer jobs per month from April 2018 to March 2019.

If we look at Trump’s job creation stats, according to The Labor Department, the number of jobs decreased by 501,000 from April 2018 to March 2019. That is almost 42,000 fewer jobs per month, even though in 2018 Trump cut down on taxes to improve the whole situation. Trump’s total for 2018 was 2.303 million in the number of jobs created, coming short of Obama’s results in 2014 and 2016 respectively. 

27. In total, 2.153 million jobs created in 2017 under Trump’s administration.

Trump’s total job growth for 2017 was 2.153 million jobs, according to the job growth by year stats. From August 2018 to August 2019, 1.782 million jobs were created. In 2019, job growth totaled 1.141 million; based on certain predictions, it will reach 1.711 million in total jobs created by the end of the year. 

28. 172,000 new jobs per month in the first 31 months of Trump’s term; 5.345 million new jobs in total.

If we take the US job growth by year graph and break it down into months, for the first 31 months of Trump’s term in office there was a total of 5.345 million new jobs being created or 172,000 jobs per month; the result of his tax cuts no doubt. For comparison, the last 31 months of Obama’s term in office had an increase of 6.838  million jobs, or 221,000 jobs on average per month, or 48,000 jobs more per month than Trump.  

29. 250,000 or more jobs added on average each month in 2014.

In 2014, more than 250,000 jobs were being added each month, and in 2015 this number was more around 227,000. Consequently, upon answering the question “how many jobs has Trump created?” we would notice that these numbers would still be unreachable. Nevertheless, Trump’s results are still pretty good, considering the number of baby boomers that retired and the general business climate where owners complain about how they can’t find enough workers to boost their existing workforce. 

30. 3.7% is the current unemployment rate; lowest for the past 50 years.

On the other hand, the unemployment rate of 3.7% is the lowest in more than 50 years, according to job growth statistics by year. This number goes in favor of Trump’s administration, proving that their economic policies had good results. Despite this, there were some remarks coming from economists that the unemployment rate was on a steady decline since 2011; so it is not certain whether the economic policies of Trump’s administration can take all the credit for the current unemployment rate. 


We can see that the job growth under Trump so far looks pretty similar to the final years of Obama’s presidential term, even though Trump told voters that he would have even better results as president. Still, there was a slight increase in 2018 — after-tax cuts — but the current trend is decreasing due to employers being uneasy about trade relations with China, although, according to his statement, Trump seems to be happy with the results.

Overall, it is essential for us to continue to monitor job growth by year, by month, and by presidential term in order to define the current economic climate more precisely, prepare for future affirmative actions, as well as to get a closer grip on the president’s new policies and the current direction of the US economy.