Published: Sun, August 05, 2018
Markets | By Noel Gibbs

United States job growth slows in July, unemployment rate drops

United States job growth slows in July, unemployment rate drops

The low unemployment rate could encourage the Federal Reserve to...

The broadest measure of unemployment - including all workers forced into part-time jobs and those who have become discouraged in their search - fell three tenths to 7.5 percent, its lowest level since May 2001.

On Friday, China's Commerce Ministry said a new set of proposed import tariffs on $60 billion worth of U.S. goods are rational and restrained and warned that it reserves the right of further countermeasures in the intensifying trade war.

Hispanic Americans enjoyed a record-low unemployment rate of 4.5 percent in July, breaking the record of 4.6 percent set just the month before. Hiring in dentists' offices was relatively flat, adding only 200 jobs last month.

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And analysts said the latest data could understate the strength of the labor market.

Last month, Trump also saw a 4.1 percent GDP rate, the highest since 2014.

A quirk in the calendar may explain why average hourly wages inched up only 7 cents from June to July, explained Josh Wright, chief economist at software firm iCIMS: The Labor Department surveys employers at a different time than when companies pay their workers.

Hospitals added 6,800 jobs in July, 36% fewer than the 10,600 new jobs added in June, a month that represented a massive hiring spike from sluggish May growth.

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"We are bringing unemployment way below 4.5 percent, which the Fed considers full employment", she said. The economy created 59,000 more jobs in May and June than previously reported and needs to generate about 120,000 jobs per month to keep up with growth in the working-age population. African-American and Hispanic unemployment rates are hovering around the lowest rates since the Labor Department began recording those statistics in the early 1970s. Construction companies hired 19,000 more workers after increasing payrolls by 13,000 jobs in June.

There have also been concerns that the trade tensions could dampen business confidence and lead companies to shelve spending and hiring plans.

"There is a record 156 million people in the labour force".

Martha Gimbel, director of economic research at, noted before Friday's report that in the first half of 2018, the average monthly increase in jobs had even exceeded those in the comparable periods of 2015 and 2016. Leisure and hospitality was a main contributor with 40,000 jobs, while health care and social assistance added 33,500 and professional and business services added 51,000 - including about 28,000 in temporary help, the most in more than a year.

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