The U.S. insurance industry added 2,700 jobs in July, continuing the upward trend in employment the industry has seen over the past few months. The seasonally adjusted 0.11% increase added to the uptick in the overall jobs market, according to the the latest employment report released by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics on Aug. 2.
The labor figures released by BLS showed industry employment, which currently sits at roughly 2.4 million, has increased by 21,200 since July 2012. BLS also released adjusted employment figures for June, which showed the industry added 6,700 jobs between May and June --- up slightly from the 6,000 new jobs BLS previously reported.
Nationally, total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 162,000 in July, and the unemployment rate edged down to 7.4%, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported. July's unemployment rate was the lowest the nation has seen since December 2008, according to a statement released by Alan B. Krueger, chairman of President Obama's Council of Economic Advisers
Employment rose in retail trade, food services and drinking places, financial activities, and wholesale trade.
For the insurance industry, total payrolls are reported each month on a seasonally adjusted basis, along with the current month's nonfarm payrolls. Separately, data by industry segment --- broken out by various insurance carrier and noncarrier categories --- are available only on an unadjusted basis for the prior month.
Between May and June, no insurance industry sectors saw an employment decrease. Increases came in life (up 0.75% to 336,600 jobs); health (up 0.70% to 471,700 jobs); property/casualty (up 0.31% to 525,000 jobs); title (up 1.73% to 76,500 jobs); reinsurance (up 4.6% to 27,300 jobs); agents/brokers (up 0.36% to 663,600 jobs); and third-party administration of insurance funds (up 0.76% to 145,100 jobs).
Claims adjusting stayed flat at 50,700 jobs.
On a year-to-year basis, only life insurance and claims adjusting saw a decrease. Life insurance dropped 3.36% from the 348,300 jobs the sector had in June 2012, and claims adjusting fell 3.06% from 52,300 jobs.
During the same period, employment rose in health (up 2.12% from 461,900 jobs); property/casualty (up 1.10% from 519,800 jobs); title (up 6.99% from 71,500 jobs); reinsurance (up 5.81% from 25,800 jobs); agents/brokers (up 0.27% from 661,800 jobs); and third-party administration of funds (up 3.5% from 140,200 jobs).
In terms of wages, all industry sectors saw an improvement over where average weekly pay stood one year ago.
Wages rose in life and health (up 6.77% to $1,349.26); property/casualty (up 5.56% to $1,332.54); title (up 1.42% to $1,106.69); reinsurance (up 12.83% to $2,276.74); agents/brokers (up 8.91% to $1,140.34); claims adjusting (up 14.56% to $1,328.24); and third-party administration of insurance funds (up 17.57% to $1,158.14).