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May Jobs Report: Unemployment Rate Hits 16 Year Low

May Jobs Report: Unemployment Rate Hits 16 Year Low”

Even with the tightening labor market, wage growth is still slower than expected considering the low unemployment rate - with only 2.5 percent growth over the past year.

In April, average hourly earnings rose by 2.5 percent from the previous year to $26.19.

Nonfarm payrolls rose by a seasonally adjusted 138,000 from the prior month, the Labor Department said, and job gains in the prior two months were revised down. More part-timers are finding full-time work.

The Trump administration has designated the pace of hiring for good-paying skilled jobs in construction, manufacturing and mining as among the categories it monitors for economic health.

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Many economists see the labor market as reaching full employment, or the point when virtually all job seekers have found work, but wage inflation is still modest. "The probability that any of the Trump stimulus would become reality has decreased significantly in recent weeks".

This measure, however, does not account for those individuals who have dropped out of the labor force-it simply measures the percent of those who did not have a job but actively sought one over the month. It led the Fed to cancel its plans of raising rates last June.

Employers added a weaker-than-expected 138,000 jobs in May, undershooting forecasts of around 180,000.

Fed officials indicated last week a June rate hike is likely and Wall Street investors predict there's a 91% chance of a rate increase later this month. Long-dated U.S. Treasury yields fell to almost seven-month lows, and short-dated yields touched their lowest in more than two weeks.

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"U.S. employers have a positive outlook for the second quarter as the country waits to understand how the new administration's policies will come into effect", said Michael Stull, senior vice president, Manpower North America.

The labour force participation rate, or the share of working-age Americans who are employed or at least looking for a job, could have risen last month as college graduates enter the labour force.

Against the background of balanced risks in US economy, Powell expected a total of three rate hikes this year, including the central bank's March rate hike.

Unemployment declined to 4.3 percent, but the number of unemployed workers was essentially unchanged at 6.9 million. The current pace of job growth is almost three times the rate necessary to absorb growth in the labor force. Many analysts expect the economy to grow at a healthy 3% annual rate in the current quarter after meager 1.2% growth the first three months of the year. The U-6's three-month drop is the biggest since 2014. Payroll processor ADP reported that in a private survey of companies, it found that a hefty 253,000 jobs were added in May, mostly among companies with fewer than 500 workers.

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