by Mary Margaret Olohan
The U.S. economy added 224,000 jobs in June, while the unemployment rate slightly increased to 3.7 percent, according to Department of Labor data released Friday.
224,000 jobs were added in June, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics report, about double the number economists predicted. The number of adults working or looking for work remained steady at 6 million, according to the Labor Department. The Labor Department reports that employment growth has averaged 172,000 per month thus far this year, compared to 223,000 a month in 2018.
Economists predicted the economy would add 165,000 jobs and the unemployment rate would remain at about 3.6 percent, according to The Wall Street Journal.
The June figures come on the heels of May’s job report that revealed unemployment steadily showing the lowest numbers in 50 years. The U.S. economy added 75,000 jobs in May, while the unemployment rate remained at 3.6 percent. Economists had predicted 180,000 jobs would be added and that wage growth would rise to about 3.2 percent.
Job growth has come back strong after February when just 33,000 jobs were added.
The unemployment rate has held steady between 4 percent and 3.7 percent for more than a year before the April jobs report showed it drop to 3.6 percent. Prior to April’s report, the consistent unemployment rate suggested that workers are jumping back into the workforce to fill open jobs, rather than the workers who are currently collecting unemployment welfare, according to WSJ.
“The strong June jobs numbers start the summer off on a strong footing for the American worker, and a big disappointment for the markets that are hoping for substantial interest rate cuts from the Fed,” Robert Frick, corporate economist at Navy Federal Credit Union told the Daily Caller News Foundation.
“The 224,000 jobs added were broad-based, with good gains in everything from manufacturing to construction to business services.”
Frick added that workers might be concerned over wages not rising more quickly.
“That wages are not higher at this stage in the expansion points to either more slack in the workforce than thought – a theory supported by the number of workers that joined the ranks of those looking for work last month – or some other factors such as technology or globalization,” Frick said.
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Mary Margaret Olohan is a reporter for the Daily Caller News Foundation.