June 2019 Jobs Report: Strong Job Growth Numbers Provide Comfort About the Labor Market
According to the latest data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the labor market added 224,000 new jobs in June, while the unemployment rate rose slightly to 3.7% from 3.6%.
The jobs growth number this month is comforting after a few months of uncertainty. While job growth may be slowing down from its astonishing rate last year, it’s reassuring that the economy is still creating jobs at a reasonable pace.
So far this year, the economy has created 172,000 jobs on average each month. While that is down from last year’s blockbuster average through June of 235,000 jobs, it is not substantially different than where we were at this time in 2016 or 2017. This report suggests a return to solid job growth after numbers in 2018 that were boosted by government spending.
This recovery continues to chug along and create the jobs that Americans need. That being said, the lack of acceleration in wage growth suggests that this recovery is still incomplete. This is an important reminder that there are still workers who have not fully benefited from this recovery.
While growth in the goods sector continues to slow year-over-year, possibly reflecting negative impacts from the trade war, growth in the service sector is steady, supporting the labor market as a whole. The numbers this month should be a comfort to anyone who had been worried about the direction of the labor market.
Martha Gimbel is the Research Director for the Hiring Lab. Previously she was the Research Director and Senior Economist at the Joint Economic Committee on Capitol Hill, a senior policy advisor to the Secretary of Labor, and an economist at the Council of Economic Advisers focusing on labor market issues. She has an undergraduate degree from Brown University, where she studied classics and economics, and a master’s degree from the University of California, San Diego in economics.