October employment in the graphic design industry increased slightly – what do they think?

Overall employment in printing plants in October 2023 increased by 0.8% compared to September. Employment in the production sector increased by 0.7%, and non-production employment by 1.1%.

The employment situation in print shops has remained stable throughout the summer and will begin to improve – even slightly – in the fall. Overall printing employment in October 2023 was up 0.8% over September, and for drilling in carpeted/uncarpeted areas, manufacturing employment was up 0.7% while non-manufacturing employment was up 1.1%.

In the publishing sector, overall employment in publishing fell 1.2% from September to October, while advertising and related services employment rose 1.1%.

Earlier this year, we started adding a number of other business categories to our employment table, the reporting of which, as you may remember from our tracking of the publishing and creative markets, is reported with a month-long delay.

Overall sign industry employment increased 1.2% from August to September, and sign manufacturing employment increased 2.6%. (Non-production decreased by 0.9%).

Employment in the converted paper products sector decreased 0.8% from August to September, with employment in the paperboard packaging sector falling 1.0% and employment in paper bags and coated and treated paper unchanged.

Looking at selected publishing and creative segments, from August to September employment in periodical publishing increased by 0.3%, in press publishing it increased by 1.7% and in book publishing by 1.3%. Employment in the graphic arts industry increased by 1.3%. Employment in advertising agencies decreased by -0.8%, and in PR agencies increased by 1.1%. Employment in direct mail decreased by 1.5%.

So employment overall has increased, but not by much.

In terms of October employment overall, the BLS reported on November 3 that total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 150,000 in September and the unemployment rate rose to 3.9%. In turn, the change in total non-agricultural employment for August was revised down by 62,000. (from 227 thousand to 165 thousand), and the change for September by 39 thousand. (from 336 thousand to 297 thousand). The U-6 rate (the so-called “real” unemployment rate, which includes not only those currently unemployed but also those underemployed, marginally attached to the labor force and who have stopped looking for work) increased from 7.0% to 7.2%.

The labor force participation rate fell from 62.8% in September to 62.7% in October, and the employment-to-population ratio fell from 60.4% to 60.2%. The labor force participation rate of people aged 24-54 also dropped from 83.5% to 83.3%.

Not a very good employment report and below economists’ expectations – especially after the hit GDP report for the third quarter. (The auto workers’ strike also played a role, and we’ll likely see a return to employment in the November report.)

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