America’s unemployment rate rose above the 10 per cent mark in October to reach a 26-year high after jobless figures rose by 190,000 last month. The largest job losses in October were in construction, manufacturing, and retail trade. Health care employment continued to increase in October with extra 29,000 jobs. Since the start of the recession, health care has added 597,000 positions. Temporary help services also added 34,000 jobs in October.
Existing-home sales bounced back strongly in September with first-time buyers driving much of the activity, marking five gains in the past six months. The national average existing-home price for all housing types was $174,900 in September, which is 8.5 percent lower than September 2008. Distressed properties continue to distort downwards the average price because they generally sell at a discount relative to traditional homes in the same area.
The American time use survey focuses on the average amount of time per day that American individuals worked, did household activities, cared for household children, participated in educational activities, and engaged in leisure and sports activities. It also includes measures of the average time per day spent providing childcare.
The American unemployment rate rose to 9.7 percent in August, the highest since June 1983, as employers lost a net total of 216,000 jobs. Average weekly earnings in August rose by only 0.8 percent to $624.29 due to reductions in the average working week.