National Overview: The UKG Workforce Activity Report for October 2022 shows the total number of shifts worked1 by people at U.S. businesses decreased 0.9% since September 2022 while the monthly index dropped half a point to 97.1, reflecting a steady cooling of the labor market entering the fourth quarter of 2022. Continued declines in retail shift volume — spanning four consecutive months, the industry’s longest negative streak since before the pandemic — seem to validate reports that stores are pulling back on hiring for the holiday season amid economic uncertainty, while hope for another month of shift growth in healthcare was muted by the sector’s 0.3% downturn.
UKG will discuss the findings in a live labor market briefing on Tuesday, November 1, at 10 a.m. ET (U.S. and Canada). Register to attend.
Commentary: Dave Gilbertson, vice president, UKG
“We fully expect the October 2022 jobs report to show another slight reduction in new job creation following continued efforts by the Federal Reserve to intentionally slow the labor market and achieve a soft landing for the economy. By extension, the slightly accelerated declines in October workforce activity, which remain within historical and expected ranges, are not a cause for alarm.”
Industry Analysis: Shift volume across all industries fell, most notably in manufacturing:
- Healthcare: -0.3%
- Retail, hospitality, and food service: -1.0%
- Services and distribution: -1.8%
- Manufacturing: -2.2%
Region Snapshot: For the first time since May 2022, no region saw an increase in workforce activity:
- West2: -0.1%
- Southeast3: -1.0%
- Northeast4: -2.1%
- Midwest5: -2.4%
Business Size: The 5,000+ employee category saw its largest increase in shift work since June 2022:
- Fewer than 100 employees: -1.2%
- 101-500: -1.1%
- 501-1,000: 0.4%
- 1,001-2,500: -2.2%
- 2,501-5,000: -5.5%
- More than 5,000: 0.8%
Timeliness: The UKG Workforce Activity Report is a high-frequency index analyzing shift work trends for 4.2 million people at 35,000 U.S. businesses to understand job creation and economic momentum.
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Footnote 1: “Shifts worked” is a total derived from aggregated employee time and attendance data and reflects the number of times that employees, especially those who are paid hourly or must be physically present at a workplace to perform their jobs, “clock in” and “clock out” via a timeclock, mobile app, computer, or other device at the beginning and end of each shift.
Footnote 2: West is defined as Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming.
Footnote 3: Southeast is defined as Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Florida, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee.
Footnote 4: Northeast is defined as Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, and West Virginia.
Footnote 5: Midwest is defined as Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Texas, and Wisconsin.
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