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08 July 2018, 10:27 | Joann Bryant
US jobs growth stronger than expected
Some 213,000 jobs were added, the Labor Department reported Friday, making for the second month in a row with figures above 200,000. "There are more people coming into the labor force", said Satyam Panday, senior economist at S&P Global Ratings.
In its report July 6, the government revised up its estimate of job growth in May and April by a combined 37,000.
The US economy needs to create roughly 120,000 jobs per month to keep up with growth in the working-age population. However, the official unemployment rate increased from 3.8 percent to 4 percent, largely as a result of more people entering the workforce and actively looking for jobs.
The OECD attributes this decline to the vast increase in part-time and temporary jobs since 2008.
The labor force participation rate is still hovering near historic lows.
Although average hourly wages grew 2.7% in June from a year ago, they didn't change much from May and came in below economists' expectations.
Wages were also a bit of a disappointment, with average hourly earnings rising by 0.2% over the prior month and 2.7% over the prior year.
Wage growth is barely keeping ahead of inflation, which is firming up as the economy strengthens.
"I'm really excited to see that the labor force is growing", said Catherine Barrera, chief economist of the online job site ZipRecruiter.
Minutes of the Fed's June 12-13 policy meeting published on Thursday offered an upbeat assessment of the labor market.
The dollar extended losses against the euro and the yen after the employment report. Trump has spoken about slapping tariffs on imported cars, trucks and auto parts, which General Motors has warned could hurt the USA auto industry and drive up vehicle prices. Prices for longer-dated U.S. Treasuries rose.
The economy has now been adding jobs for almost eight years - its longest streak on record.The U.S.is considered at near full employment, and the biggest challenge in the job market is the lack of available workers - a record 6.7 million jobs remain unfilled.
While the unemployment rate slightly increased in June, the number of employed Americans increased to a record high. Unemployment figures don't include jobless people not in the labor force, or those who haven't sought a job over the previous four weeks. This was most due to a 1 percentage point rise in the unemployment rate for black women, although their EPOP also rose by 0.6 percentage points. The U.S. and China slapped tit-for-tat duties on $34 billion worth of the other's imports on Friday.
The broader US economy appears sturdy.
Job growth was widespread across the economy with solid gains in business, health care, construction and manufacturing.
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