The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) releases the jobs data for July. Overall employment rose by 164,000 new jobs; that’s great. Average hourly wages grew by 8 cents to $27.98, a year-over-year growth of 3.2 percent; again great. 163.4 million people working is the highest number of people working in history; more good news. [Data release link]
However, there’s an even better result in a very important data-point. 363,000 people moved from part-time to full-time employment. The move from PT to FT employment is a key indicator of a very strong economy and workers are benefiting in benefits, wages, and total compensation which now exceeds 5.5 percent growth.
[CNBC NEWS] Economists had expected the unemployment rate to drop to 3.6%, which would have tied a 50-year low, but an influx of 370,000 new workers to the labor force brought the participation rate up to 63%, its highest since March. The total labor force of 163.4 million set a record high.
The report “illustrates that, for all the concern over weak global growth and trade policy, the domestic economy is still holding up reasonably well,” said Andrew Hunter, senior U.S. economist at Capital Economics. (read more)