Last updated on July 2nd, 2019 at 09:04 am
The U.S. added 215,000 nonfarm payroll jobs in July, according to figures released by the Department of Labor on Friday.
The unemployment rate was unchanged at 5.3 percent. It dropped to that level, the lowest unemployment rate in seven years, in June.
Jobs were added in the retail trade, health care, professional and technical services, and financial activities sectors.
In July, there were 8.3 million unemployed Americans, flat from June. There were 2.2 million long-term unemployed, also fairly steady from June.
Average hourly earnings were up 0.2 percent in July.
Today’s report is likely to be scrutinized by the U.S. Federal Reserve as it determines whether to raise interest rates, said Robert Haworth, senior investment strategist at U.S. Bank.
“The Fed has noted liftoff from zero interest rates will be data dependent,” Haworth said in a market update. “Wage growth is a key sign to the Fed of health in the employment market. This week’s employment report will be reviewed to confirm or dismiss the softness signaled in employment cost.”