Markets

Unemployment Rate Falls to 3.9 Percent

Unemployment Rate Falls to 3.9 Percent

The latest data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics reveals that Americans at the bottom line of the USA economy are continuing to make large gains in employment.

"We've continued to add jobs routinely every month for so long, and the unemployment rate we have reached is incredible", said Catherine Barrera, chief economist of the online job site ZipRecruiter.

The July job creation report issued Friday by the Labor Department fell well short of analyst expectations, but figures for May and June were revised upward by 59,000.

The gains came from white-collar professional firms as well as manufacturing which filled 37,000 jobs.

The Hispanic unemployment rate dropped to 4.5 percent, the lowest level on record.

Businesses are also getting less picky in their hiring.

"Congress and the administration have taken important steps in recent weeks to tackle this challenge, but this jobs report is a reminder that more work needs to be done through partnerships with the private sector to solve the workforce crisis", she said. The number of part-time workers who would prefer full-time work has fallen almost 13 per cent in the past year and now stands at 4.6 million. Over the past year, it has hired more than a half-million Americans and stands as the leading job-creating sector.

And the underemployment rate - which includes discouraged workers no longer searching for work, as well as involuntary part-time workers - dropped to 7.5 per cent, the lowest in 17 years, from 7.8 per cent.

A separate measure, average hourly earnings for production and non-supervisory workers, also increased 2.7 percent from a year earlier, unchanged from the prior month. That was an improvement over a 4-cent gain in June.

Economists had forecast that the number of jobs created would be nearly 190,000 for the month.

The U.S. labor market continues to strengthen. Hiring in dentists' offices was relatively flat, adding only 200 jobs last month. The new spending follows a 60 percent jump in oil prices in the past year.

The gain in payrolls was concentrated at private employers, which added 170,000 jobs, while the public sector cut 13,000 positions.

Employment showed little or no change over the month in other major industries, including mining, wholesale trade, transportation and warehousing, information, financial activities, and government.