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MNI BRIEF: US Hiring Slows But July Wage Growth Stays Hot

(MNI) Washington

U.S. nonfarm payroll employment added 187,000 in July, roughly flat from a downward revised 185,000 in June and slightly below analyst expectations for a 200,000 increase, data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics showed. The unemployment rate dipped a tenth to 3.5%, staying in the narrow 3.4% to 3.7% range it's been in for the past 15 months.

The data point to a very resilient labor market in spite of the Federal Reserve's rapid interest rate hikes since early last year. Wage growth is still elevated, with average hourly earnings coming in a tenth stronger than expected at 0.4% on the month, same as in June, and 4.4% over the past 12 months. Labor force participation has been flat at 62.6% for five straight months.

Job gains were led by health care (+63K), followed by social assistance (+24K)), financial activities (+19K) and wholesale trade (+18K). Employment in leisure and hospitality, which had seen big gains in the first quarter, added just 17,000.

MNI Washington Bureau | +1 202-371-2121 |
MNI Washington Bureau | +1 202-371-2121 |

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