June Brings Uptick in Legal Employment

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According to the BLS report, titled "The Employment Situation-June 2018", total nonfarm employment increased by 213,000 in June.

In June, white-collar professional firms filled 50,000 jobs last month to lead the way in hiring while manufacturers added 36,000 jobs.

"Healthy" rise in the unemployment rate: Even though it was expected to decline, the unemployment rate rose to 4 percent from 3.8 percent.

From Table B-3, average hourly earnings were +2.7% year over year in June economy-wide, while average weekly earnings were +3.0%. The U.S. central bank increased interest rates last month for the second time this year and has projected two more rate hikes by year end.

The OECD attributes this decline to the enormous increase in part-time and temporary jobs since 2008. While improving prospects for employment and wages are helping attract people from the sidelines of the job market, the retirements of older workers are among factors that have been exerting downward pressure on participation.


In addition, this report's less-favorable indicators - relatively sluggish wage growth and a higher unemployment rate due to increased labor-force participation - keep open the possibility of further enhancements to both the demand and supply drivers underpinning a continued expansion that is stronger and more inclusive.

With a record 6.7 million unfilled jobs in April, economists are optimistic that wage growth will accelerate later this year.

Faster wage growth would also indicate that inflation is building in the economy, which hasn't been the case even though unemployment is this low.

Average hourly earnings rose by 5 cents, or 0.2%, to $26.98, lower than market expectations for a 0.3% improvement.

Hanging over the labor market are President Trump's tariffs on goods from some of America's largest trading partners, along with retaliatory charges. The Fed's preferred inflation measure hit the central bank's 2 percent target in May for the first time in six years. Some recent reports have suggested that businesses can't find qualified workers at the wages they're offering - but this report "did not have any evidence to back up those claims", said Elise Gould, a senior economist with the Economic Policy Institute.


The United States imposed the first duties on $34 billion in Chinese goods early Friday, and China immediately retaliated with levies on an equal amount of American goods, including heartland staples like soybeans, corn, pork and poultry. Economists say the effects could include companies freezing future investment and potentially additional hiring, which would eventually have a cooling effect on the jobs figures in coming months.

A broader measure of unemployment, which includes people who want to work but have given up searching and those working part-time because they can not find full-time employment, rose to 7.8 percent last month from a 17-year low of 7.6 percent in May. Construction payrolls likely increased after rising by 25,000 in May.

A worker cuts a piece from a steel coil at the Novolipetsk Steel PAO steel mill in Farrell, Pennsylvania, U.S., March 9, 2018.

These figures are capable of creating confidence in the economy of the US.


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