Job growth in May was revised up to 77,000 from an original estimate of 69,000, but April’s figure was revised down to 68,000 from 77,000.
“All the strength we saw in the first quarter has tailed off. Now we are heading into the second half of the year on softer footing,” Jennifer Lee, senior economist at BMO Capital Markets, told MarketWatch.com. “Employment growth is slowing, and companies are not hiring as fast as they were.”
The lower pace of job creation over the past quarter falls well short of what’s required to reduce the unemployment rate. The economy would have to add at least 250,000 jobs each month for several years to trim unemployment to around 6 percent.
The current pace of hiring is not enough to absorb the natural increase in the labor force, which grows by more than 100,000 workers each month.
The largest gains in June occurred in the fields of professional services (47,000), health care (13,000) and manufacturing (11,000). Hiring in most other segments of the economy was little changed.
The stock market took a nosedive with today’s jobs report, as the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell by more than 150 points.
Local stocks in the BizTimes Stock Index could not escape the carnage. The largest local decliners this morning were Joy Global Inc. (down $1.73 to $55.40), A.O. Smith Corp. (down $1.20 to $48.40) and Snap-on Inc. (down $1.02 to $61.50).