Hispanic Unemployment Hits Another Record Low

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This refutes the notion that the slower overall gain in jobs for the month reflected the impact of tariffs.

The U.S. labor market remained in solid shape last month, adding 157,000 jobs while the unemployment rate ticked down to 3.9 percent and wage growth improved - although workers are still waiting for significant gains in their purchasing power because prices are also rising.

The jobs data released on Friday followed a report that the USA trade deficit widened in June for the first time in four months as exports fell and imports grew.

The US Department of Labor also said the unemployment rate fell from 4.0 per cent to 3.9 per cent in July, near to the 18-year low it reached in May.

And the underemployment rate - which includes discouraged workers no longer searching for work, as well as involuntary part-time workers - dropped to 7.5 percent, the lowest in 17 years, from 7.8 percent. Service-providing sectors grew by 177,000 jobs, with health care/social assistance gaining the most with 49,000 jobs.

Excluding those factors, hiring in July would have been closer to the monthly average this year.

But a big drag came from sporting goods, hobby, book, and music retailers, which lost 31,800 jobs on net.

The stock market rose on the news with the Dow gaining 136 points on Friday.

One cloud on the horizon has been the Trump administration's trade fights with China, the European Union, Canada and Mexico. Wages have remained in a holding pattern below the highs of the last expansion, despite persistent complaints from employers that they're struggling to find skilled workers and job openings near a record high. There were declines in transport, utilities and financial payrolls last month.

The Fed's preferred inflation measure, the personal consumption expenditures (PCE) price index excluding the volatile food and energy components, increased 1.9 percent in June.

July wasn't a stellar month for hiring in the USA healthcare sector, with fewer jobs added in ambulatory care, hospitals and nursing facilities compared with a month earlier.

Restaurants, bars and hotels added 40,000 jobs, the most in nine months.

In a VOA interview via Skype, Cramer says so far, there is little evidence that Washington's many trade disputes have hurt employment, but that could change if the bickering goes on for "six or eight months".

In a statement on Wednesday, the Federal Reserve described a healthy picture of the United States economy.

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