The We lch Consulting Employment Index retreated to 101.3 in August, the lowest number seen in three months. The index is not far off of its recent highs for the decade, though. The decline in the index was seen in both the index for men and the index for women.

The Welch Index measures full-time equivalent employment after adjustment for population growth and the aging of the workforce. An Index value of 100.0 indicates that adjusted full-time equivalent employment is the same as its level in the base year of 2004.

Over the past 12 months the index has risen from 100.4 to 101.3. The increase in the Index over the past year means that full-time equivalent employment has been growing at a faster rate than the adult population.  Full-time equivalent employment increased 0.9% faster than the adult population over the past year (after making adjustments for the aging of the U.S. adult population). Looking back at the most recent 6 months, the index took a slight dip from 101.4 in February to 101.3 currently. The rate of change over the past year is about in-line with the overall trend for the last 3 years of an increase of 1.0% per year. The upward trend appears to be slowing down in the most recent six months.

In August the index for women pulled back from its all-time high of 104.7 in July to 104.1. This is  up from 103.1 a year ago. The index for men declined 0.3 points, from 99.4 last month, to 99.1. The index for men is up 0.9 points from its year ago value of 98.2. Over the last two years the index for women is up 3.8 points while the index for men is up 2.0 points


Technical Note: Full-time equivalent employment equals full-time employment plus one half of part-time employment from the BLS household survey (the Current Population Survey). The data reported for a given month is generally from the calendar week that contains the 12th day of the month. The Welch index adjusts for the changing age distribution of the population by fixing the age distribution of adults to the distribution in the base year of 2004. Seasonal effects for the share of workers employed in part-time jobs are removed in a regression framework using monthly indicator variables.