Unemployment Rate Stagnant as Economy Adds 195,000 Jobs
June saw U.S. employers add approximately 195,000 jobs as April and May job figures were also revised upwards. The robustness of the year’s job creation suggests an ever strengthening economy even as the unemployment rate sits at 7.6 percent. But, unlike the causes of recent unemployment rate fluctuations, the current rate is stagnant due to more people looking for jobs—a positive sign.
Pay also increased faster than inflation in June, as the national average hourly pay jumped 10 cents to $24.01. Over the past year, average pay has increased by 2.2 percent as consumer prices have increased 1.4 percent. The yield on 10-year Treasury notes also rose .16 percent points to 2.7 percent, reaching its highest level in nearly two years and an indication that investors are increasingly confident in the economy.
Over the past six months, the economy has added an average of 202,000 jobs per month, up from 180,000 during the previous six months. Hiring and consumer confidence also continue to improve even as the federal government has made painful budget cuts and ramped up Social Security taxes. In fact, the economy added 70,000 more jobs in April and May than original tallies indicated.
The manufacturing sector shed 6,000 jobs, but the healthcare industry (20,000 jobs), construction (13,000 jobs), and temporary jobs (10,000 jobs) all reported gains. Retailers also added 37,000 jobs in June and the hotels, restaurants, and entertainment industry added 75,000 jobs. But many of the new jobs were part time and the number of Americans working part-time but preferring full-time work spiked to 8.2 million, up 322,000 over May—the most in eight months.