- Payroll employment increase accelerates to 528,000.
- Wage gain remains firm at 5.2% y/y.
- Unemployment rate returns to 50-year low.
The 528,000 gain in nonfarm payrolls last month (4.0% y/y) followed increases of 398,000 and 386,000 during the prior two months. It was the largest monthly increase since February and was double the expectation for a 250,000 rise in the Action Economics Forecast Survey. The increases during June and May were revised up slightly from 372,000 and 384,000.
Average hourly earnings rose 0.5% last month, up from 0.4% in both June and May. It was the strongest gain since March. The 5.2% y/y rise was increased from 4.9% growth last year. A 0.3% monthly gain had been expected.
Job strength lowered the unemployment rate in July to 3.5%, where it had last been in February 2020. The rate was forecasted to be 3.6%. Household employment rose 179,000 following declines in two of the prior three months. The labor force fell 63,000, the third decline in four months. The overall unemployment rate, including workers who are marginally attached & part-time for economic reasons, held steady at 6.7%.
The employment and earnings data are collected from surveys taken each month during the week containing the 12th day of the month. The labor market data are contained in Haver’s USECON database. Detailed figures are in the EMPL and LABOR databases. The expectations figures are in the AS1REPNA database.