Nonfarm payrolls rose by 121,000 in June, and the unemployment rate was unchanged at 4.6 percent, the Labor Department reported Friday.
Manufacturing employment edged up in June by 15,000, on the heels of a small decline in May. Over the month, employment was up in transportation equipment, machinery, and electrical equipment and appliances. Mining employment grew by 6,000 in June. The industry has added 114,000 jobs since its most recent low in April 2003, largely reflecting gains in support activities for oil and gas. In June, construction employment was essentially unchanged for the fourth consecutive month.
Average hourly earnings rose by 8 cents in June, or by 0.5%.
The latest read on the nation's employment situation came in a bit softer than what economists were looking for, though the increase in average hourly earnings will be of concern to Federal Reserve officials, who will want to stem any wage-created inflation. Economists were looking for a jump in payrolls of about 200,000, and an increase in hourly wages of 0.3%.