U.S. ECONOMICS: Payrolls Increase Lighter, Unemployment Rate Higher, Hourly Earnings Flat; 6th Straight Print Over 200,000


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Nonfarm payrolls rose 209,000 in July from a revised 298,000 in June (was 288,000) and 229,000 in May (was 224,000) for a net 15,000 increase to prior reports. This is a 6th straight month of 200,000+ gains, the best string since 1997. The unemployment rate rose to 6.2% versus 6.1% previously, as the labor force rose 329,000 and household employment increased 131,000. Average hourly earnings rose were flat after gains of 0.2% in May and June. The workweek was steady at 34.5. Private payrolls rose 198,000, including a 58,000 gain in the goods producing sector, while construction employment was up 22,000, with manufacturing jobs rising 28,000. Jobs in the service sector increased 140,000, with the government adding 11,000, while business services added 47,000.

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