The U.S. economy added 164,000 jobs in July, tracking closely to economists’ estimates of165,000, according to MarketWatch.
Here are some of the highlights from the report.
1. Solid job growth
On average, the U.S. has added 165,000 jobs per month this year, placing July’s 164,000 new hires right at the center of the bell curve.
CNBC: “The Labor Department reported Friday that payrolls increased 164,000 during the month, just 1,000 below the 165,000 Dow Jones forecast. This also was about the average monthly gain for the year. In 2018, the economy created 223,000 jobs a month.”
Fox Business: “U.S. employers added 164,000 jobs. in July, right in line with Wall Street's expectations — a fairly unnoteworthy number, but evidence that the record-long economic expansion is continuing to chug along at a healthy pace.
2. Not all industries are growing
Though overall job growth has been healthy, many of those new jobs are in a few specific industries like professional and business services and health care, while industries like manufacturing and retail have seen hiring rates and even job numbers decline.
Washington Post: “In July, several industry sectors posted solid gains. Health care added a robust 30,400 jobs. Restaurants and bars added 15,400 jobs. Local governments contributed 14,000 jobs, primarily in education. The finance and insurance industry added 13,900.”
New York Times: “Retailers continued to struggle, cutting jobs in July for the sixth month in a row. The mining sector also contracted, probably partly as a result of lower oil prices.”
CNN Business: “Manufacturing added only 16,000 jobs in July — not much for a sector with 12.9 million jobs overall — while the number of hours that factory workers work in a week declined to their lowest level since 2014. Mining and logging industries, which have been rocked by volatile oil prices, subtracted 5,000 jobs. Construction employment was also essentially flat, with heavy and civil engineering construction shrinking by 4,300 jobs.”
3. Other signs of strength
While the growth numbers may not have been terribly exciting, the report did highlight several other positive changes over the past month.
MarketWatch: “The amount of money the average worker earns rose 8 cents to $27.98 an hour in July. The increase in pay in the past 12 months edged up to 3.2% from 3.1%, but it’s still below a post 2008 recession peak of 3.4%.”
CNN Business: “Workers also continue to jump into the job market, with 370,000 people entering the labor force in July. And people are finding jobs faster after losing one: The average duration of unemployment dropped to 19.6 weeks, which is the lowest it's been in this economic cycle.”
Yahoo! Finance: “The labor force participation rate unexpectedly ticked up to 63.0% in July, reaching the highest level since March and showing more workers either employed or actively looking for work. And the U-6 measure of unemployment – a broad metric capturing both the unemployed and those too discouraged to seek out work – declined to 7.0% in July, the lowest level since December 2000.”
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