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Jobs report: Slower growth in May

by Kyle Ziemnick
Posted 6/07/19, 11:27 am

The U.S. Labor Department reported that the economy gained only 75,000 jobs in May, a significant decrease from April’s 224,000. Economists had projected a gain of 185,000 jobs. Unemployment remained at its nearly 50-year low of 3.6 percent.

Slower overall global market growth and trade battles in the United States could be responsible for the more sluggish numbers. Companies are also buying less high-end machinery and equipment, a sign of caution about the economy.

“It definitely looks like we’ve downshifted in the pace of job growth,” said Michael Feroli, chief U.S. economist for JPMorgan Chase & Co., according to Bloomberg. “Overall, it’s a disheartening report, particularly since you may have some trade effects there.”

May’s job report was the lowest since February, but the average gain for this year so far is still holding at 164,000, which would reduce the unemployment rate over time. The data sparked renewed calls for the Federal Reserve to cut interest rates to encourage growth. Returns on bond investment fell immediately after the report came out.

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Kyle Ziemnick

Kyle is a graduate of the World Journalism Institute.

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