US job growth slows in July to 209,000, unemployment rate rises to 6.2%

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There were some negative surprises in the latest US jobs numbers.

Against expectations growth slowed in July and the unemployment rate rose from 6.1 percent to 6.2 percent of the workforce.

Last month saw payrolls increase by 209,000, whereas in June they surged by 298,000.

Still it is the sixth straight month that more than 200,000 jobs have been added.

And the underlying momentum in hiring was shown by revisions for May and June with the latest calculations revealing 15,000 more jobs created than previously reported.

The Federal Reserve can use the fact there is still some slack in the labour market to justify keeping interest rates ultra-low for a while to stimulate the economy.

Most economists look for the first increase in the second quarter of next year.

The cooling in hiring is unlikely to change the Fed’s policymakers perceptions about strong economic growth in the third quarter.

The US economy grew at a 4.0 percent annual pace in the second quarter after shrinking at a 2.1 percent rate in the first three months of year. While restocking by businesses lifted the figure, growth is seen remaining sturdy for the rest of 2014.

with Reuters

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