Healthcare added 34% fewer jobs in July

Healthcare added 34% fewer jobs in July

Following this report stock futures remained lower, but had little reaction to the jobs report itself. Average hourly earnings increased 2.7 percent from a year earlier, unchanged from June and matching projections, while the jobless rate ticked down to 3.9 percent as forecast.

The U.S. labor market was a mixed picture in July, but overall remains in good shape.

This trend is unlikely to persist, said Ellen Zentner, Morgan Stanley's chief U.S. economist.

But, as with small businesses, manufacturers are having trouble filling job openings, she said. The current wage gains are barely enough to cover the rising costs of food and housing for many Americans.

The additional signs of strength in the job market could add to concerns the Federal Reserve would move to raise the key lending rate more aggressively.

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Nonfarm payrolls increased by 157,000 positions last month, the Labor Department said.

"The important point is that there is no sign of overheating but that aggregate wages and salaries (jobs x hours x earnings) are growing at a brisk pace", Neil Dutta, the head of U.S. economics at Renaissance Macro, said in a note.

The pace of hiring workers in the United States slipped to its slowest in four months in July, but interest rates remain on track to rise twice more this year because of the underlying strength of the jobs market.

But the Bureau of Labor Statistics revised the past two months upward by 59,000 to 248,000 jobs in June and 268,000 in May. Over the past 12 months, manufacturing has added 327,000 jobs.

The economy added 157,000 jobs in July, which was almost 30,000 less than expected.

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President Trump and Republicans have been trumpeting the stronger wage growth as a sign that their policies, particularly the large tax cuts that took effect on January 1, are working. Employment rose in transportation equipment (+13,000), machinery (+6,000), and electronic instruments (+2,000). In the service sector, hiring of 118,000 was the lowest since December, partly reflecting the cuts at Toys "R" Us.

Manufacturing added 37,000 jobs in July, with most of the gain in the durable goods component.

The drop in government payrolls was concentrated in local governments, which shed 20,000 jobs.

Among the unemployed, the number of people looking for work after losing or quitting their jobs fell by almost 290,000 to 1.8 million.

Less educated workers have been the big gainers in terms of employment in the last few years of the recovery. The employment to population (EP) ratio for that group also rose to 79.5%, the highest it has been since May 2008.

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Hispanic Americans enjoyed a record-low unemployment rate of 4.5 percent in July, breaking the record of 4.6 percent set just the month before.

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