The conventional wisdom is that employment picture brightened in October. Some 92,000 new payroll jobs were added, and job growth for August and September was revised upward by a cumulative 139,000. October's unemployment rate, 4.4 percent, was the lowest in more than five years.
We refer, of course, to the "other" employment survey, of households rather than businesses, which gives some indication of the immigrant share of job growth. The household survey showed that a whopping 437,000 new positions were created in October. But the gains were overwhelmingly skewed toward Hispanics—our proxy for immigrants, because about 40 percent of them are foreign-born.
Here are month's gains by racial group:
More than two-thirds of October's new jobs went to Hispanics, who represent just 14 percent of the U.S. labor force.
As for that declining unemployment rate, we notice that
This is hardly new news. As our readers know, we have compared month-to-month changes in Hispanic and non-Hispanic employment for years. Since the start of Bush II's administration (January 2001) Hispanic employment has risen 3.730 million, or 23.1 percent. Just 3.781 million jobs were filled by non-Hispanics, a gain of only 3.1 percent.
Unfortunately, the government does not publish monthly data on immigrant employment. Because so many Hispanics are immigrants and the children of immigrants, Hispanic employment is the best proxy we have for impact of foreign-born workers on month-to-month employment change.