US employment falls in June


US employment falls in June
Non-agricultural employment in the US fell for the sixth month in a row in June, with 62,000 jobs lost over the month.

The US department of labour said employment continued to fall in construction, manufacturing, and employment services, while health care and mining added jobs.

Overall, 438,000 people have lost their jobs this year.

The number of unemployed persons was essentially unchanged in June, at 8.5 million, and the unemployment rate held at 5.5 per cent, the government said.

In comparison, a year earlier the number of unemployed persons was seven million, and the jobless rate was 4.6 per cent.

Secretary of labour Elaine Chao said: "The unemployment rate in June remained unchanged at 5.5 per cent, which is lower than the average 5.7 per cent rate of the 1990s."

The number of persons who worked part time for economic reasons, at 5.4 million in June, was about unchanged over the month, but was up by 1.1 million over the past 12 months.

These individuals indicated that they were working part time because their hours had been cut back or they were unable to find full-time jobs, the department said.

Analysts had been predicting worse news, and US stocks rallied slightly as a result. The Dow Jones industrial average ticked up 0.39 per cent by 10:21 ET, (15:21 BST) to 11,259.56.

The data came out as US Treasury secretary Henry Paulson warned high oil prices would prolong the current economic slowdown.

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