September shrug: Only 134K jobs added, but 49-year-low unemployment rate

September shrug: Only 134K jobs added, but 49-year-low unemployment rate

September shrug: Only 134K jobs added, but 49-year-low unemployment rate

The Labor Department's closely watched monthly employment report on Friday is also expected to show a steady rise in wages, suggesting moderate inflation pressures, which could ease concerns about the economy overheating and keep the Federal Reserve on a path of gradual interest rates increases.

The historically low US unemployment rate fell again during the month of September, but about 50,000 fewer jobs were added to the economy than experts predicted.

There was a huge upward revision to job growth in August, to 270,000 from 201,000, and an upward revision to job growth in July to 165,000 from 147,000, for a combined upward revision of 87,000. On average, businesses added almost 200,000 jobs per month this year - well above the number needed to keep up with a growing population.

It added: "Some of the weakness in this industry in September may reflect the impact of Hurricane Florence".

In line with Black unemployment was the overall unemployment rate, which fell from 3.9 percent to 3.7 percent, lowest since December 1969, the department said.

The historically low unemployment rate and relatively weak job growth number might indicate that employers are having an increasingly hard time adding positions because of the availability of workers.

According to the Commerce Department's most recent data, consumer spending, which accounts for two-thirds of the US economy, slowed down slightly in August, while the savings rate held steady at 6.6 percent. September's storm and catastrophic flooding in the Carolinas likely preventing some businesses from bringing new workers on, and some people from getting to their first day on the job.

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President Donald Trump's trade fights could also weigh on the economy, though the effect on hiring won't likely be felt until next year, economists say. The average workweek was unchanged at 34.5 hours.

The smaller survey of households from which the jobless rate is derived regards persons as employed regardless of whether they missed work during the reference week and were unpaid as result.

Last month, average hourly pay increased 2.8 percent from a year earlier, one tick below the year-over-year gain in August. The yield on the government's 10-year Treasury note, a benchmark for mortgages and other loans, has touched its highest level in seven years. While that's still lower than what economists would expect with a rock-bottom unemployment rate, it's an improvement from the 2.0 percent growth seen at the start of this year.

Average earnings rose 8 cents, to $27.24 per hour last month. "Wage growth, which picked up in the prior month, came in line with expectations with hourly earnings rising 0.3% on the month for an annual rate of 2.8%".

Wage growth remains sufficient to keep inflation around the Fed's two per cent target. Some companies are starting to boost wages - Inc. being among the latest to pledge raises - to attract or retain workers. Online retail giant Inc announced this week that it would raise its minimum wage to $15 per hour for USA employees starting in November.

For now, consumers, business executives and most economists remain optimistic.

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