Employers add 255,000 Jobs in July
By JEFFREY SPARSHOTT- Wall Street Journal
Aug. 5, 2016
WASHINGTON—The U.S. labor market in July capped off the best two-month stretch of hiring so far this year, a sign of strength for an economy that has been showing mixed growth signals in recent months.
Nonfarm payrolls rose by a seasonally adjusted 255,000 last month, the Labor Department said Friday.
Revisions showed U.S. employers added 292,000 jobs in June, up from the initially estimated 287,000. They added 24,000 in May, up from the prior estimate of 11,000.
Wages for private-sector workers matched their strongest annual pace of growth in seven years, more Americans entered the labor force during the month and the jobless rate held steady 4.9%.
Average hourly earnings for private-sector workers rose by 8 cents, or 0.3%, from June to July to $25.69. From a year earlier, average hourly earnings were up 2.6%, outpacing inflation.
Job gains in July were broad-based. Professional and business services such as computer design and engineering services health care, finance, food services, construction, manufacturing and government all added jobs.
Consumer Spending on Steady Rise
By Eric Morath and Josh Mitchell - Wall Street Journal
Aug. 2, 2016
WASHINGTON—Consumer spending increased steadily for the third straight month in June, suggesting Americans have capacity to remain the primary driver of economic growth this year.
Personal consumption, which measures how much Americans spent on everything from haircuts to cars, increased 0.4% in June from a month earlier, the Commerce Department said on Tuesday. Incomes rose more slowly, increasing 0.2% for the month.
Consumer spending also rose 0.4% in May and was up 1% in April. Each of those gains outpaced income growth.
Household spending accounts for more than two-thirds of economic output in the U.S. and has been a mainstay of the expansion. Consumer expenditures were a bright spot for the economy during the second quarter, advancing at the fastest rate in more than a year. The gain offset weaker business and government spending.
US Factory Sector in July Posting Five Month Back-to Back Growth
By Ben Leubsdorf - Wall Street Journal
Aug. 1, 2016
The U.S. factory sector decelerated modestly in July but posted a fifth- straight month of growth.
The Institute for Supply Management on Monday said its index of manufacturing activity declined to 52.6 in July from 53.2 in June, signaling continued overall growth at a somewhat slower pace.
A reading above 50 indicates that factory activity is growing while a reading below 50 signals contraction
Chief U.S. Economist Joshua Shapiro said “We expect manufacturing output to continue to grow slowly in the months immediately ahead.”
A total of 11 industries tracked by ISM reported growth in July, led by textile mills, and seven sectors reported contraction including appliances and transportation equipment.
“We’d characterize the U.S. market as stable,” Rockwell Automation Inc. Chief Executive Blake Moret told analysts last week. “We are seeing some growth in consumer but continued weakness in heavy industry, including oil and gas.”
Total industrial production, including output from mines and power plants, rose 0.6% in June from the prior month but was down 0.7% from a year earlier, according to Federal Reserve data.
The year-over-year decline largely reflected a sharp fall in mining output; mfg production was up 0.4% in June compared with a year earlier.
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