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The U.S. added 209,000 jobs in June, showing that hiring is slowing but still solid

Construction workers prepare steel for a crane at construction site in New York City on May 18, 2023.
Spencer Platt
/
Getty Images
Construction workers prepare steel for a crane at construction site in New York City on May 18, 2023.

U.S. employers added 209,000 jobs in June, marking another solid month of job growth, though it was slower than in previous months in an indication that a hot labor market could be cooling.

At the same time, job gains for the previuos two months were revised downward by a total of 110,000 jobs, with 306,000 jobs created in May and 217,000 in April.

Meanwhile, the unemployment rate, which is calculated from a different survey, inched down in June to 3.6 percent from 3.7 percent the month before.

Overall, the jobs data shows a labor market that continues to hum along in some sectors, but is slowing down in others in a sign that the Federal Reserve's aggressive rate hikes to fight inflation and having some impact though the job is far from done.

Employers continued to add jobs in health care, business services, and construction. But retailers cut jobs last month, and factory employment was relatively flat.

Meanwhile, average wages in June were up 4.4% from a year ago – in line with revised figures from the two previous months. Wages are now rising faster than prices, giving workers increased buying power.

That's good news for workers, but it's likely to worry the Federal Reserve, which has already indicated it will need to continue raising interest since inflation is too high for its comfort.

The Fed meets later this month again and it's widely expected to raise interest rates again after pausing at its previous meeting.

Copyright 2023 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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Scott Horsley is NPR's Chief Economics Correspondent. He reports on ups and downs in the national economy as well as fault lines between booming and busting communities.