The unemployment rate held steady at 8.2% in June after the economy added 80,000 jobs. Although slightly below expectations of 90,000, June’s growth is an improvement from the 77,000 jobs created in May. Job growth in the second quarter averaged only 75,000 new jobs per month, a severe slowdown from the 225,000 job average seen in the first quarter. In fact, the second quarter of 2012 saw the weakest job growth in two years.
“The U.S. economy and labor market remain stuck in low gear,” said Jim Chessen, chief economist of the American Bankers Association. “Job creation during the second quarter was the weakest since the third quarter of 2010,” he added.
The private sector continues to drive job growth, adding 84,000 jobs in June, down from the 105,000 added in May. The public sector shed 4,000 jobs in June, fewer than the 28,000 job drag in May.
The majority of June’s job creation was in the professional and business services sector, with other sectors remaining nearly unchanged. Professional and business services added 47,000 of June’s jobs.
The unemployment rate remained at 8.2% in June as the labor force participation rate remained unchanged at 63.8%.
Read the BLS release.