Mining added another 5,000 jobs in June, according to data released July 6 from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
A long run of impressive monthly job creation is among the main reasons why the projections of economists, in both the private and public sectors, have continued to be bullish for USA growth, despite growing uncertainty about the rest of the global economy and the threat of a trade war. Average hourly earnings growth remained 2.7% against hopes of a slight pick-up to 2.8%.
The labour force participation rate, or the proportion of working-age Americans who have a job or are looking for one, rose to 62.9% last month from 62.7% in May.
The unemployment rate rose from an 18-year low of 3.8% to 4% but that was because more people were drawn into the strong labor market. Instead of accelerating, as many had hoped, annual wage growth fell slightly, to 2.7 percent from 2.8 percent.
"Overall the report is good news insofar as it suggests the economy still has some capacity to grow at an above-trend pace without generating much inflationary pressure", said Michael Feroli, an economist at JPMorgan in NY.
For Catherine Barrera, who works as the Chief Economist for online job site ZipRecruiter, reportedly said the labor force numbers quelled her concern about the unemployment figure.
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The June jobs is out and it's a beat. Fed officials last month boosted the number of interest-rate hikes they expect in 2018 to four from three.
Department of Labor Secretary Alex Acosta said, "It rose because more people are choosing to re-enter the labor force, to come back".
While improving prospects for employment and wages are helping attract people from the sidelines of the job market, the retirements of older workers are among factors that have been exerting downward pressure on participation.
President Donald Trump and Republicans are running on a growing economy going into the 2018 midterm elections, especially since Trump signed the Republican tax reform plan into law at the end of 2017.
The economy also faces a substantial threat from the Trump administration's trade war with China and from other, ongoing trade disputes with US allies, including Canada and Europe. With 93 straight months of job growth - a historical record - many employers have said they're feeling pressure to raise wages.
The economy also faces a substantial threat from the trade tension with China and from other trade disputes with US allies, including Canada and Europe. Automakers added 12,000 jobs in June. Over the past 12 months, this sector has gained 285,000 jobs, with about three-quarters of them involving durable goods such as metal products, computer parts and cars.
Every sector of the economy added workers in June except retail, which lost 22,000 jobs to offset gains in May.