U.S. employers hire 222k more in June

Posted July 08, 2017

Government statistics released today show the USA economy added 220,000 jobs last month, which could be encouraging for new college graduates seeking work. The jobs report found average wages increased by four cents to $26.25 in the month of June.

USA job growth surged more than expected in June, keeping the Federal Reserve on course for a third interest rate hike this year, despite slow wage gains.

Average wages rose 2.5% year-on-year, which analysts said was a sign the market still had room to improve.

In June, 1.6 million persons were marginally attached to the labor force, down by 197,000 from a year earlier.

But with the gains in employment came another month of sluggish wage increases.

After release of the jobs data, US short-term interest rate futures showed continued bets the Fed would raise interest rates in December. CareerBuilder's 2017 Midyear Job Forecast is predicting that 60 percent of employers plan to hire full-time, permanent workers in the second half of this year, up from 50 percent last year.

Employers have added 863,000 jobs during Donald Trump's first five months in office, compared to 908,000 jobs added during President Obama's last five months in office. The veteran unemployment rate is based on a much smaller sample size in the agency's Current Population Survey than is the overall rate. The food services sector added 29,000 jobs, bringing its year over year increase to 277,000.

Nationally, the labor force participation rate is 62.8 percent and changed little in June. Anything beyond that will further chip away at the jobless rate or bolster the size of the labor force as workers who dropped out are lured back. The report showed jobs growth slowed last month.

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The change in total nonfarm payroll employment for April was revised up from +174,000 to +207,000; and the change for May was revised up from +138,000 to +152,000.

Unemployment nudged up by 0.1 percent to 4.4 percent, an indication that more people are feeling confident enough to re-enter the workforce and look for a job.

Social-assistance employment rose by 23,000, financial-activities employment rose by 17,000 and mining jobs rose by 8,000.

Sterling fell to a more than one-week low of $1.2871 and was last down 0.7 percent at $1.2883.

The 222,000 jobs figure beat Wall Street expectations of 175,000.

This has been a tough year for the retail industry.

The sector has purged jobs for three straight months.

While growth has continued to pull workers off the sidelines of the economy into gainful employment, it hasn't yet translated into strong wage gains, though some economists believe it may be coming soon.