For the second month in a row, U.S. job growth exceeded economists’ expectations, according to the latest BLS employment situation report.
According to the report, released today, the U.S. added 255,000 jobs in July, after economists predicted the U.S. would add 180,000 jobs. This is the second time in two months job growth has exceeded expectations – 287,000 new jobs were created in June, up from the 180,000 new jobs expected – and a giant contrast from May’s remarkably weak job job growth (38,000, which would later be revised to a pitiful 11,000).
While the unemployment rate remained unchanged at 4.9 percent, and the labor force participation rate increased slightly from 62.7 to 62.8 percent – an indication that unemployed individuals who stopped looking for work may be starting to feel more optimistic about their job prospects.
The industry that saw the biggest gains was professional and business services – which has now added more than half a million jobs over the last year.
Average hourly earnings also increased this month, going up 8 cents to $25.69 per hour – a 2.6 percent increase from a year ago.
While month-to-month changes aren’t as significant as changes over a longer term, it is important to celebrate these small wins. It’s no secret that small businesses contribute greatly to the health of the economy, so I urge you to keep up the good work and keep building your talent pipelines, hiring the right people and setting your employees up for success – after all, their success is your success.