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Financial News: U.S. Job Growth Slows But Matches Economist Estimates

U.S. Job Growth Slows But Matches Economist Estimates In July

08/02/2019 - 09:23:00 (RTTNews)

(RTTNews) - U.S. job growth slowed in the month of July but still came in line with economist estimates, according to a closely watched report released by the Labor Department on Friday.

The report said non-farm payroll employment climbed by 164,000 jobs in July after jumping by a downwardly revised 193,000 jobs in June.

Economists had expected employment to increase by 164,000 jobs compared to the spike of 224,000 jobs originally reported for the previous month.

The continued job growth reflected notable job gains in professional and technical services, healthcare, social assistance, and financial activities.

The Labor Department also said the unemployment rate held at 3.7 percent in July, unchanged from June and in line with economist estimates.

The unemployment rate came in unchanged as the 370,000-person jump in the size of the labor force was largely offset by the 283,000-person increase in the household survey measure of employment.

With unemployment remaining low, the report also said average hourly employee earnings rose by another $0.08 to $27.98 in June, up 3.2 percent compared to the same month a year ago.

"This is well ahead of the 1.6% consumer price inflation figure so real household disposable incomes are rising at a decent clip, which should underpin support for spending," said ING Chief International Economist James Knightley.

Knightley noted a strong domestic jobs market helps to mitigate the near-term threat to economic activity posed by President Donald Trump's continued escalation of the U.S-China trade war.

"With unemployment at such low levels and the competition of staff remaining intense, workers have a sense of job security," Knightley said. "With wages rising in a benign inflation environment, they have spending power too.

"However, the 'uncertainties' that the Federal Reserve worries about - trade and a weaker global growth story - are being ratcheted up and the Fed looks set to follow this week's rate cut with another 25bp move in September," he added. "What happens thereafter depends largely on how trade talks progress."

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