Daily US Times: In August, the US economy added fewer jobs than expected as employment rose by 235,000. President Biden said he is disappointed by the jobs growth.
In July, there were 1.05 million jobs created. August’s jobs growth is well down than expected, which adds to fears that the recovery from the pandemic may be running out of steam.
In spite of the disappointing hiring levels, the unemployment rate fell to 5.2% in August from 5.4% in July.
Economists say rising coronavirus infections caused by the Delta variant have hit spending on tourism, travel and hospitality.
They also note that the Labor Department’s data was collected in the second week of August, so it doesn’t reflect the impact of hurricanes Henri and Ida in the second half of the month.
President Joe Biden said he was disappointed about the job growth numbers but defended his record on the economy, saying it was growing consistently.
Mr Biden said: “Total job creation in the first seven months of my administration is nearly double, double any prior first-year president.”
The US Bureau of Labor Statistics data shows that there were notable job gains in the last month in businesses and professional services, warehousing and transportation, private education and manufacturing.
However, employment fell in retail and was flat in hospitality and leisure, after increasing by an average of 350,000 per month over the previous six months.
While the number of unemployed people edged down to 8.4 million, it remains well above the pre-pandemic level of 5.7 million seen in February 2020.