United States unemployment rate falls to 3.9 percent as hiring slows

US jobs growth slows more than expected in July

Ahead of this morning's new jobs report, most projections said the USA economy added roughly 190,000 jobs in July.

The biggest job gains came in the business and professional services sector, which added 51,000 new jobs during the month.

"Homebuyers should feel a bit more confident today after the Bureau of Labor Statistics' employment situation report for July stated that the unemployment rate edged down", Mark Fleming, chief economist at First American, said in a press release. Average hourly earnings increased 2.7 percent from a year earlier, unchanged from June and matching projections, while the jobless rate ticked down to 3.9 percent as forecast.

The decline in the jobless rate reflected a 284,000 decline in the number of unemployed people in the workforce, while the number of employed increased by 389,000.

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Jobs and recruiting site Glassdoor tracks wages across the USA in its Local Pay Reports.

Asian unemployment dropped to 3.1 percent while black unemployment, still hovering around historical lows, increased slightly to 6.6 percent. That kept the annual increase in wages at 2.7% in July.

President Donald Trump's administration has imposed duties on steel and aluminum imports, provoking retaliation by the United States' trade partners, including China, Canada, Mexico and the European Union. The only time in the recorded history the rate was lower was in the 1960s.

Nonbank mortgage employment estimates lag national jobs data by a month. The solid rate of hiring reflects strong production, business confidence, and plans for expansion.

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"Price hikes tied to tariffs are likely to exacerbate that dynamic in the third quarter, which will leave the Federal Reserve raising rates without the wage gains that usually accompany inflation", she said. Small businesses (one to 49 employees) grew by 52,000 jobs, while large businesses (500 employees or more) gained 48,000 jobs.

People looking for jobs at factories had a better chance of being hired last month. This suggests that the trade disputes between the USA and China are not yet slowing down hiring in manufacturing. As usual, ambulatory healthcare services dominated healthcare hiring with its 9,900 new jobs, although that was a 27% drop from the 13,500 jobs added in June.

Yet the trade fights didn't appear to impact hiring last month. Kitco Metals Inc. and the author of this article do not accept culpability for losses and/ or damages arising from the use of this publication.

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